Supporting the German minority

Project description

Title: Measures to support the German minority in Uzbekistan
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry of the Interior (BMI); German Federal Office of Administration (BVA)
Country: Uzbekistan
Lead executing agency: German Federal Ministry of the Interior (BMI)
Overall term: Since 1996

Uzbekistan. © GIZ

Context

Since the early 1990s, around 2.1 million ethnic Germans and their families have relocated to Germany from the former Soviet Union. Today, the German minority in Uzbekistan numbers around 10,000, almost half of whom live in rural areas with poor infrastructure and difficult economic conditions. The German Government is working hard to make amends for the consequences of the Second World War, and is making efforts to improve the livelihoods of the German minority in the post-Soviet states and to provide ethnic Germans with a brighter future.

Objective

The German minority represents its interests independently in its country of origin. It is developing its ethno-cultural identity and actively fulfils its role as a bridge between Germany and the country of origin.

Uzbekistan. © GIZ

Approach

To achieve the programme objective, GIZ organises various projects in cooperation with the four German cultural centres.

The measures to support the German minority focus primarily on cultural activities and youth work, promoting self-organisation, elite training and social assistance.

Particular attention is being paid to the older generation, as its members not only suffered the most from the consequences of war, but are also the ones who remember and pass on German cultural traditions.

On behalf of the German Federal Ministry of the Interior (BMI), GIZ provides the cultural centres with advice on project management. Responsibility for the programme and its implementation lies with the GIZ programme office in Almaty, Kazakhstan.

Results

By offering a comprehensive range of training courses and extensive leisure activities for the German minority, as well as guaranteeing social assistance for those in need, the programme aims to provide a basis for allowing the ethnic minority to preserve and further develop its own identity, and to improve its living conditions. The work conducted by the cultural centres and associated youth clubs means that members of the German minority are well-integrated in their respective communities. These activities also make an important contribution at a social level as well as to broader aspects of ethnic Germans’ lives.

Uzbekistan © GIZ

Joint cultural projects with other minorities and international exchange programmes are helping to boost the profile of the German minority in Uzbekistan while at the same time enabling ethnic Germans to act as a bridge between Uzbekistan and Germany.