Building Bridges Statement

The Toolkit was designed to collect and share the know-how on voluntary projects involving people seeking or who have recently found refuge, as well as raising awareness on forced migration in general. The collection of guidelines, methods and case studies is non-exhaustive and should simply foster your own inspiration and support you in implementing projects on the topic. The creation of the Toolkit has been driven by the ever bigger need of the international SCI network to exchange best practices on projects in the field. It was coordinated by SCI Switzerland with the support of Útilapu Hungary. Its existence wouldn’t have been possible without the support of the Mercator Foundation Switzerland and the active contribution of the Building Bridges working group and a number of SCI branches.

Case studies are successful implemented examples sharing with you what is going on in the SCI movement on the topic of refugees and migration.



Weekend activities discovering together new places and learning new skills by making videos and taking pictures

When: 2016 / 2017

Contact / Source: Útilapu Hálózat – SCI Hungary – Open Doors 

Ágnes Jekli and Sarina Sarjos,

    Objectives and aim
    The aim of the Winter Full of Fun project was to help the inclusion and integration of the refugee and asylum seeking youth in Hungary, by providing regular programs, new experiences, interaction with the majority society, intercultural learning and fun. Additionally, with this project, they wanted to give the refugee youth the chance to become an active part of Útilapu Hálózat – Open Doors, learning about volunteering, getting the chance to be creative and expressing themselves, in order to  be able to participate in different international programs as well in the future by using their new knowledge.
    During the project, Útilapu Hálózat – Open Doors organized thematic weekends where the active volunteers and the refugee youth got the chance to do activities together. The organized trips gave a good chance for team building as well as to maintain the good relation within the target groups. Thanks to the support of The Refugee Fund, they got the possibility of new experiences and to strengthen the relationships between them. In that sense the stronger connection helps the refugee youth in their motivation for integration into the Hungarian society.

    Target groups

    • Youth refugees and asylum seekers
    • Open Doors volunteers
    • Local community for the Restaurant Day 

    Winter: In the first program they learned Hungarian folk dance as well as traditional Hungarian songs. The second program was Ice Skating. For some participants it was the first time and they had a lot of fun. Everyone liked it and wants to continue doing in the future. In the third program the participants were exploring the Buda caves. Historical facts about the cave have been transmitted during the tour and the caves could been explored safely. Afterwards, a Restaurant Day in the new office was arranged. They were cooking together with the refugee youth and adults and invited people to join while eating delicious intercultural food dishes. In the menu there was, for example, Afghan bolani and Indian Samosa. At the same time fundraising was arranged to get donations from the guests for future projects with refugees. In the last program, art was created and a colorful world map was painted at the wall of the childcare center where the refugee youth are living. The painting was done together as everyone added elements and colors they wanted. 

    Summer: During the first day they were playing team building games and went to the beach where they were practicing together how to use a camera and took short stop motion videos and pictures. In the evening they had a bonfire and they cooked dinner together in the garden. The next morning they took a boat to the historical town Tihany where they were hiking and making videos. Participants formed groups and had one experienced adult volunteer in their group to give support and advice in filming or camera use when needed. They had different tasks to make videos about, like “film something that flies”. After making videos, they had a picnic together and then took the train back to Budapest.

    Public relations
    Posting pictures and videos on Facebook and Instagram. 

    Evaluation methods
    After each program the organizers had a talk about the activity and what can be improved for the next thematic weekend. As some of the participants were changing, feedback was collected directly after every program from the refugee youth and the volunteers.

    Both projects have been supported by the Refugee Fund of SCI International.

    Sustainability and follow up
    In order to strengthen the relationships as well as new skills a weekend trip to the Balaton lake was organized while making videos together. More activities have been planned with the refugee youth and the volunteers. They want to continue weekend programs with the refugee youth and Open Doors volunteers, but also are planning to arrange an intensive, whole weekend trip, where more new skills can be learned. Meetings  at the child care center where the refugee youth is living serves to reach the needs and keep the connections and cooperation as good as it is now.


      See pictures on Open Doors’ Facebook:


      You can share your experience, observations, tips and tricks, pictures etc. by uploading for instance a method or a case study to the Building Bridges Toolkit. As this Toolkit is a work in progress to which all involved parties are invited to contribute, we would also be very grateful for your support and contribution in order to inspire others to continue the work towards peace and intercultural understanding.