For Refugees2024-05-21T13:33:04+02:00

We help you to find a German city that matches your needs and preferences.

Re:Match is a small, needs-oriented relocation programme in its pilot phase. The project follows a very unique approach as it takes into account your needs and preferences as well as the capacities and profiles of welcoming cities in the question of distribution and relocation.

Currently, Re:Match matches Ukrainian protection seekers – who are currently in Poland and considering relocating – directly with German cities. On this page you can find out more about this programme and how it works.

We are currently relocating!

In 2024, Re:Match is building on its success of 2023. With our new partner Right to protection (R2P) in Poland, Re:Match reached out to displaced Ukrainians who are interested in a relocation to Germany via our matching tool. In digital and in-person information sessions they were informed about the Phase II process of 2024. Currently, we are not planning further outreach and information events, as we have identified the 2024 Re:Match participants. At the end of May through mid-June, the interviews are taking place, to identify the needs and preferences of the protection seekers and their families. Phase II participants will be matched and relocated in two cohorts between June and July.

During the implementation phase in 2023, we were able to match 78 Ukrainian protection seekers with six German municipalities using our self-developed algorithm-based mechanism and relocate them from Poland to Germany. The pilot phase was comprehensively evaluated and were processed in an evaluation report and an advocacy report. The findings were also used to further develop the matching criteria, the questionnaires, the algorithm and the associated processes for Phase II.

How it works – Step by Step

On this page, you can find detailed information about the project. Further questions can be asked and answered in digital Q&A sessions  (the available dates are announced at the bottom of this page). Only during these Q&A sessions you can schedule an interview appointment, necessary to participate in the programme. The interviews will be carried out by our project coordinator at Right to Protection Charitable Foundation. Thus, you should definitely sign-up for one of these sessions if you’re interested in participating in the relocation!

The interviews are the basis on which matches between protection seekers and cities are made. During your interview with our project coordinator, you will discuss your needs and priorities in person or digitally. You will also be asked to provide relevant information about yourself (and other people you want to be relocated with). Meanwhile, participating cities are also asked about their capacities and needs.

Based on the information you provided, the Re:Match algorithm calculates the best match for you. We will inform you about the result and provide you with more information on the proposed city. You have the final say on whether you’d like to accept the match. The matched city cannot reject you.

After informing the city, we will organise your relocation together with you: we help you arrange your trip and provide you with information about the city and the local support structures.

Upon arrival, the local authorities will provide guidance for registration and other paperwork for you to receive a temporary residence permit, financial support and so on. Now you can start to settle in your new city.

Requirements

To participate you must meet all of the following requirements:

  • you are fleeing from the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine

  • you are a Ukrainian national who had their residence in Ukraine before February 24, 2022 or a Ukrainian national’s family member

  • you already reside in Poland or are currently planning to leave for Poland from Ukraine

  • you have not applied for or received a temporary residence permit in Germany yet

Currently, we don’t have any new Q&A sessions planned.

We received enormous interest in participation for Re:Match’s Phase II in 2024.

Therefore, we closed enrollment for this year’s matching & relocation to Germany. Currently, the Re:Match team is working together with the identified participants to head into the phase of personal interviews and subsequent matching.

Disclaimer2024-04-25T16:47:36+02:00

This Q&A answers all questions concerning the Re:Match project. For questions about general arrival and reception in Germany, please find links to the official information pages of the Federal Government below.

For details about the processes in Germany for Ukrainian refugees, please refer to the official information website of the German Interior Ministry.

Here you can access very comprehensive information about every part of arriving, settling in & integrating for Ukrainian refugees in Germany. Further down the page by Handbook Germany, you can select the themes that you want information on with the orange button.

General information in Ukrainian about life in Germany can be found here .

If you could not find an answer to your question in this Frequently Asked Section or in other official information sources, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us.

I am a refugee from Ukraine. Can I participate in this project?2024-05-21T13:35:18+02:00

Currently, we have identified all participants for the Re:Match process in 2024.

In general, all participants must fulfill all of the following requirements. These requirements are mandatory, and no exception can be made.

  • persons fleeing from the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine: Ukrainian nationals who had their residence in Ukraine before February 24, 2022 and their family members, such as spouses, unmarried partners, minor unmarried children, and close relatives (even if these family members are not Ukrainian nationals);
  • persons who have a valid foreign passport or an ID Card (2015 model);
  • persons who either already reside in Poland or are planning to flee from Ukraine;
  • persons who have not applied for or received a temporary residence permit in Germany yet.

Another participation requirement is that you are willing to participate without any pets.

We can relocate all legal adults regardless of gender. Minors and persons unable to travel alone can be relocated if accompanied by their guardian.

Please note that in general, the Re:Match project is subject to the special ruling of the European Union called the Temporary Protection Directive (TPD) which allows war refugees from Ukraine to enter and travel through the Schengen Area without a visa or residence permit. The project must also comply with the additional decisions of the Federal Republic of Germany made in this regard. That is why these requirements are mandatory, and no exception can be made.

How can I participate in this project?2024-05-21T13:36:22+02:00

Before participation, we kindly ask that you read through this website carefully.
The process to participate usually starts with our project partner Right to Protection Poland (R2P), based in Warsaw. Depending on your current location, you might have learned from another NGO about this project first. This is because they support the project in the outreach but will not be responsible for the further process.

Thank you to all the interested people that have joined us in our online and in-person information sessions. We are pleased to announce that we have successfully identified the participants for Phase II of Re:Match, to be matched & relocated to Germany in 2024.
We are currently working with them to move into the interview process for this year’s match & relocation phase. A match will be determined on the basis of the information a person or family provides during this interview.

In this section of the website, you can learn more about the Re:Match process in general.

If you are or were already in contact with us about participation, you are always welcome to reach out with further questions to the Ukrainian Re:Match project manager from Right to Protection via phone/video call or email.

You can reach Ludmilla Hano at Right to Protection via e-mail: rematch[at]r2p.ngo.

If you have not been in contact with us yet about participating in 2024, please understand that we have closed enrollment.

Will I get medical insurance in Germany?2024-04-25T16:37:00+02:00

We kindly refer you to the official information websites from the Federal Government when it comes to all aspects which are not directly linked to the project Re:Match. The information given below are just a brief overview. Detailed information about the health care situation in Germany for Ukrainian refugees can be accessed here and on mental health care here.

Generally, if you register as a Ukrainian refugee in Germany and apply to receive social assistance, you will receive a health insurance card from a state-run health insurance fund. This allows you to access healthcare services and most doctors free of charge. The costs will be covered by the welfare office of the German government.

As the process of registering with the German authorities varies from city to city, the time until you have a valid health insurance varies, too – most likely a few weeks.

However, if you require immediate medical attention or are seriously ill, mention this in the interview and it will be taken into account when matching the city to your needs. The city then will try their best to assist you with medical care upon your arrival.

I need special medical care or assistance. Can persons with special medical needs participate in your project?2024-04-25T16:37:30+02:00

If you or someone you wish to relocate with belongs to a vulnerable group and requires special protection or medical care, we will consider these factors during your matching and relocation process. You will be asked to provide concrete and comprehensive information about your individual special needs during the interview with our project partner Right to Protection Poland. If you, for example, have the medical need for special housing, or a mobility impairment, it is crucial that you provide this information to Right to Protection Poland, as well as documents substantiating these medical needs (i.e., doctor letters indicating the need for special medication upon arrival, or certain housing needs) – please provide an English or German translation of these documents alongside the Ukrainian/Polish. These translations do not need to be official.

This way, we can determine your participation in the project. We will try to find a city that matches your needs but can not guarantee for immediate relocation.

Will I be placed into a small town or a big city?2024-04-25T16:38:10+02:00

Our partner cities are of different sizes. The population, size and location as well as your other needs and priorities will be discussed with you in-depth during the in-person interview. The information you provided during the interview will serve as a basis for the matching algorithm to determine which participating city suits most of your needs and priorities. Please note that the algorithm will match you with a city based on all data and priorities you provide during the interview. Size of city is just one out of many priorities you will be asked for in the interview.

Note: while one city can match your size and location preferences, another city can cater for your other needs in a better way. The reasons why you are matched to a city and what this city does and does not offer in relation to your indicated preferences, will be explained to you when you learn about the match.

Our past experience of matching & relocation in 2023 showed, that participants were very likely to be highly satisfied even in smaller towns, as their other preferences were better covered there. And another very important factors is, that Germany is very well developed in terms of public transport. Each of the Re:Match cities, even the smaller ones, are very close to neighboring cities, and their services, universities etc.

Where will I live upon arrival?2024-04-25T16:38:32+02:00

After arrival, the usual process of registering and housing in Germany starts. We closely cooperate with the participating cities and provide them with the information about your individual housing needs. The cities will accommodate you in an accommodation for refugees. It is guaranteed there will be no accommodation in gyms or tents.

The exact conditions of the accommodation vary from city to city. In some cities it is a private room but with shared bathroom and kitchen, in some cities it is small residential units with own bathroom and/or kitchen within the shared accommodation. Only in exceptional cases the city can provide private living space upon arrival.

In most cases, you will learn specifics about the accommodation from us before relocation – however, this cannot be guaranteed.

You are not obliged to stay in public housing assigned by local authorities. You may opt for a private accommodation if you have the means to arrange one. In the section Further Support you will find organizations across Germany that can help refugees out in arranging private accommodation.

Why should I participate, if the registration and housing process is the same as without Re:Match?2024-05-06T15:25:40+02:00

Refugees who come to Germany have no say in where they are distributed. The distribution is based on an admission quota for the individual cities and districts. This quota is determined in advance and only rarely takes the preferences and needs of the refugees into account and you do not receive any upfront information about the city you are assigned to.

With Re:Match your priorities are taken into account and can make an informed decision. You can trust that the matching process is trying its best to accommodate most of your needs (within the capacities the cities provided for Re:Match).

Another big advantage is that the Re:Match cities are looking forward to welcoming you. They know about your arrival in advance and can prepare for your arrival specifically.

Also, the information material that we provide you before location (i.e. the Arrival Guide), will provide you with an overview over the local circumstances. Re:Match doesn’t change the local systems, but we are better equipping you to navigate it than you would be otherwise.

Please be advised that the process of registering and starting a life as a newcomer in Germany can be bureaucratic, lengthy and at times overwhelming. Re:Match is trying to establish a way to improve certain parts of this system by matching people and cities.  Re:Match participants have to go through the same registration and arrival processes as other Ukrainian refugees. We have no influence on the post-arrival processes.

The participants who were matched and relocated in 2023, were overwhelmingly satisfied with the Re:Match process – even though the process in Germany was still rather difficult at times.

What kind of legal status can I get if I relocate to Germany?2024-04-29T15:31:00+02:00

We kindly refer you to the official information websites from the Federal Government when it comes to all aspects which are not directly linked to the project Re:Match. The information given below are just a brief overview.

Ukrainians and their families fleeing from the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine are able to enter Germany freely, without a visa, thanks to the special EU decision (Temporary Protection Directive).

With Re:Match, you are entitled to the same legal status as other arriving Ukrainians.
Here, you can find more information about the legal status for Ukrainians arriving and residing in Germany.

Will I get a German residence permit if I already have one in Poland and receive welfare benefits there?2024-04-25T20:00:16+02:00

We kindly refer you to the official information websites from the Federal Government when it comes to all aspects which are not directly linked to the project Re:Match. The information given below are just a brief overview.

Ukrainian nationals can continue to travel within the Schengen area. Both Poland and Germany are part of the Schengen area.

The Federal Republic of Germany also still permits that you have already received a residence title in one country of the Schengen area, e.g. for temporary protection but will still provide a German residence permit.

How will I get to Germany?2024-04-25T20:00:29+02:00

The transport will be booked and paid for by Re:Match.

After you have received and confirmed a match with a German city, the Re:Match project team in Germany and Poland begin coordinating the travel details for your relocation.

The details and modes of travel will depend on where you are located, size of your family and number of people going to each city. For the move, we will organize your transport and provide you with all necessary information in sufficient time. Most likely, you will travel via commercial or private bus.

It usually takes about 2-3 weeks between your confirmation of the match and the journey.

We do book an extra luggage slot for each person – this means, everyone is entitled to bring two large suitcases and hand luggage with them.

Please only bring what you can carry/transport yourself, as you might have to change bus or train on your long journey to your destination in Germany.

If you wish to travel with your own car, please let us know.

I would like to be relocated together with my children. What kind of school will they attend and is it free of charge? Will daycare be provided and is it free of charge?2024-04-29T15:33:24+02:00

We kindly refer you to the official information websites from the Federal Government when it comes to all aspects which are not directly linked to the project Re:Match. The information given below are just a brief overview. Here you find helpful information in Ukrainian about everything concerning Ukrainian children in Germany – from school to financial support.

All children from the age of six are generally required to attend school in Germany. There are private and public schools in Germany. Public school attendance is free of charge.

For children under the age of six, daycare/pre-schools are available free of charge. However, how long it takes until your child or children can access these, varies from city to city.

Upon arrival in the matched city, local authorities will advise you on how to arrange daycare for children under the age of six and school attendance for children from the age of six.
When a new school year starts depends on the federal state your match city is located in but is usually between July and September.

Am I allowed to work in Germany as a person fleeing from Ukraine? And do I need to speak German to work?2024-04-25T20:00:55+02:00

We kindly refer you to the official information websites from the Federal Government when it comes to all aspects which are not directly linked to the project Re:Match. The information given below are just a brief overview.

The process of entering the work force in Germany requires patience. Some guidance on working as a Ukrainian in Germany can be found here and on German language courses here .

As soon as a provisional residence document is issued, you are entitled to work. You can then undertake, in principle, any kind of employment in Germany or begin vocational training. Please note that there are certain labor market access restrictions for some professions under German law (e.g. doctors, teachers, educators) in terms of language proficiency, recognition of foreign higher education qualifications and such.

You are also able to start your own business or work as a freelancer. Every industry has specific requirements that need to be taken into account when starting a business. These may include professional law regulations, special licenses and insurance law issues.

Upon arrival in the matched city, local authorities will advise you on how to arrange for work permit and if needed recognition of documents such as diploma, certificates, references.
However, it is important to note, that in Germany it is very important that you possess at least a basic level of German language skills to be able to enter the workforce. This means, that a first step will almost always be to attend language courses.

If finding employment or language courses are your most important preference, you will indicate this in your interview. And if the algorithm finds a city that is looking for workers with your background, we will let you and the city know of this match.
Again, this does not mean that the city will provide you with work immediately. But, it shows that there is a perspective and a general need for your skills in that city. Learning German and getting your past credentials/work experience approves will be necessary first steps.

How can I apply for financial benefits in Germany?2024-04-25T20:01:07+02:00

Upon arrival in the matched city, local authorities will advise you on how to register and receive financial support.

If you need financial support, the first thing you need to do is register with the local authorities. This process looks different in each city. Upon relocation, we will provide you with details of the local process and addresses.
Here, it is important to note, that some time will pass until you receive your residence permit and the entitlement to regular financial benefits. This time can span from only a few days to a few (2-3) weeks.
It is best to be financially equipped to pay for your own food for the initial period after arrival, as we cannot definitively say how each local authority handles this procedure.

If you do not possess the financial means to pay for food in the first few days, please let the project team know and we will inform your match city of your special need and they will try their best to accommodate this.

What financial benefits can I receive in Germany?2024-04-25T20:01:22+02:00

We kindly refer you to the official information websites from the Federal Government when it comes to all aspects which are not directly linked to the project Re:Match. The information given below are just a brief overview. Please find detailed an reliable information in Ukrainian about this here.

As a general rule: Ukrainian refugees who are registered with the authorities and are in financial need (i.e., do not earn money or not enough money), the German government will provide you with social benefit payments and medical/care insurance.

Everything was very fast and almost without any problems with the documents and paperwork. I mean, I was told where I need to go today and tomorrow. Everything was quickly arranged. As I hear from other people here, they suffered so much with the documents and the [enrolment to integration] courses.

 

Participant matched to Braunschweig, Cohort 2 in 2023

There is an 80 percent chance that I would not have gone on my own through a camp to a country where I don’t speak the local language. I’m with a small child and three suitcases. […] The project helped me a lot to realise certain desires in my child’s education and provided opportunities for further career development. I would not have made it here on my own.

 

Participant matched to Rottenburg am Neckar, Cohort 1 in 2023

Rottenburg and Tübingen have everything we need. We lived in Kyiv and when we didn’t have what we needed in our neighbourhood, we took the subway to the next one. It’s the same here. We went around the whole of Tübingen and went to Reutlingen. We found additional German courses for the child there. On vacation, we went to Stuttgart to the zoo. Everything is pretty close here. There is a very good transport interchange. In Kyiv, we have the subway, but here we have a train station instead…Even a small city can meet my needs and I recommend people to go and not be afraid. It (Rottenburg a.N.) is innovative. It is modern. It is touristy.

Participant matched to Rottenburg am Neckar, Cohort 1 in 2023

I can’t [yet] tell you about the Re:Match programme in terms of full integration. At the stage I’m at now, I’m very satisfied with everything […] I definitely would participate in Re:Match again. I ended up in the city I wanted. […] I know where to go, with whom to communicate, and I am given clear instructions on how and what to do.

 

Participant matched to Salzgitter, Cohort 3 in 2023

Which cities participated in Re:Match in 2023?

Map of Germany with - Kiel Braunschweig - Salzgitter - Düsseldorf - Toisdprf - Rottenburg a.N.

Who was matched and relocated to Germany in 2023?

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