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We want migrants who are allowed to stay here for some time or even permanently to make Bavaria their new home. To do this, they must learn German, get suitable qualifications for the labour market, take on responsibility and integrate into society. The support provided by the state is designed to help you help yourself.

Language is the key to integration

Settling in well

Those who wish to make Germany and Bavaria their new home must learn German. Being able to speak the national language is very important for successful integration. Immigrants can only be successful at school, in training and at work if they speak German. And it is only possible to get along with other people in all areas of life with a common language. People must be able to understand one another well. Children generally learn a second language much more easily than adults. Going to a day-care nursery can help your child to learn German through play, come into contact with other children and acquire the basic skills needed for attending school. Early childhood education represents a big chance for settling in well and is good for the development of your child and their later school years.


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An integration course is an educational opportunity

Bavaria wishes to achieve integration through education and work. Immigrants who meet certain requirements, speak insufficient German and do not attend a school or vocational college have a right and obligation to enrol on an integration course. The course generally involves 600 hours/teaching units (UE) of German lessons and 100 teaching units of orientation courses. The latter educates people about the laws and rules of living together in Germany. The federal government, in particular the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees, is responsible for implementing these integration courses. You must complete an application form at the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees to enrol on an integration course near you. The German course ends with an examination for the intermediate language proficiency level B1. All successful participants will receive a certificate.

You can find further information on the integration course here: to the lexicon


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Fit for the Bavarian labour market

Next to learning the language, work is the most important key to successful integration. Integration of refugees into training and work, but also generally of people with a migration background who have already lived in Germany for some time, is therefore a core pillar of Bavarian integration policy. Having a job is a basic prerequisite for independence from state transfer payments, for building a self-determined life and for equal participation in society. In addition, work creates contact between people with and without a migration background.

In addition to the regular instruments of the Federal Employment Agency, which is primarily responsible for providing advice and support in the placement of jobseekers, target group-specific support measures for the integration of people with a migration background are also necessary.

The central support measure of the State Ministry of the Interior, Sports and Integration are the job scouts and training guides or refugees. They advise and support recognized refugees, asylum seekers and tolerated persons with good prospects of remaining in Germany, and, if necessary, people with a migration background and integration obstacles, using a holistic approach, and place them in training or work. They are also available to companies as contact persons.

- For more information, please visit the website of the Bavarian Ministry of the Interior


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Exploiting opportunities

In Bavaria there are also a number of other educational opportunities in a wide range of establishments. People who are unable to read or write, or are unable to do so sufficiently, should enrol on a literacy course. Young adults can learn in classes of professional integration at vocational colleges. For immigrants who already have professional training there is a range of further education courses that will help to make them fit for the Bavarian labour market. Persons who need job-specific language skills can attend a vocational language course offered by the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees if they meet the requirements. Seize the opportunity and improve your qualifications. You can only benefit!

- For more information, please visit the website of the Bavarian Ministry of the Interior


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Lesson situation: young migrants in a classroom.
Immigrants are offered support with integration. At the same time, it is important that they meet their obligations and learn the German language.

Support and challenge

We want you to feel at home in Bavaria, get along with the local people and build a life for yourself. That is why it is important to understand the rules that everyone must observe here. Every person who lives here has rights and obligations.

Accordingly, the basic principle of ‘support and challenge’ applies to every citizen. At the same time, ‘support and challenge’ is the most fundamental rule of Bavaria’s integration policy. It means that society should help immigrants and simultaneously challenge them to meet their obligations and actively integrate.

Bavaria supports integration

Immigrants who are allowed to stay here for some time or even permanently are supported in arriving well in Bavaria and participating in society. They will find offers to learn the German language, find a job or training place, and immigrants who are allowed to stay permanently will find a home. We will help you to help yourself.

Bavaria demands integration

Everyone must observe the law and respect our free and democratic constitution and our values. Bavarian society works according to certain rules. Newcomers must adhere to them in the same way as those who have always lived in Bavaria or have done so for generations. People who are new to Bavaria must also try to learn German.

The Bavarian Integration Act

The Bavarian Integration Act (BayIntG) came into force on 1 January 2017. We introduced it to give both direction and an aim to integration. The Integration Act embraces the ‘support and challenge’ principle and provides clear rules for getting on well with one another. People who come to Bavaria must accept all binding requirements of the laws that are applicable here and take them as the standard that now applies to them. Immigrants who are entitled to stay in Bavaria permanently should understand and learn to appreciate the German language and the manners, customs and traditions prevailing in the local population and in return experience acceptance and tolerance.

The most important aspects of integration for immigrants of all ages relate to understanding our values, learning the German language and seizing opportunities to learn and work.

The Bavarian Integration Act views integration as a duty of society as a whole. Everyone must play their part, including governmental and non-governmental institutions and stakeholders. The act highlights the important role of the local authorities in Bavaria, for example, and names the Bavarian Industry Association as a key partner.

Investing in integration

The Free State of Bavaria has launched a package of measures to promote integration that is unprecedented in Germany. Bavaria is actively investing in successful integration - among other things, in kindergartens, schools, courses on values that make it easier to arrive in our country, integration projects specifically for women, but also in projects that are intended to build bridges - for a better mutual understanding of the different religions and cultures. The refugee and integration counselling service and the full-time integration guides also fund structural and nationwide support measures. The aim is to provide immigrants with the best possible support for integration.

Find out more about the Integration Act.

The Bavarian Integration Act came into force on 1 January 2017. It was announced on 13 December 2016 in the Law and Ordinance Gazette.

Three young men of different nationalities playing sport. They embrace one another jubilantly.
There are many clubs and associations in Bavaria. This makes integration easier: people spend their free time together here – playing sport or music, for example. Some even work for the voluntary fire service.

Values and living together in Bavaria

At home in Bavaria also means adhering to the existing rules and values. The Civil Code of the Federal Republic of Germany and the Bavarian constitution establish rules for democratic coexistence on the basis of equal rights. Immigrants have to accept these rules and live in accordance with them; everyday manners are important. We want them to show initiative and take responsibility for themselves and other people. For this purpose, there are various offers from the Free State of Bavaria that explain and make you familiar with the values and everyday life in Bavaria. Offers that aim to empower women should be mentioned particularly here because women and mothers play a key role in the integration process.

- Here you can find more information about the offers

Spending free time together

Shared leisure activities make integration easier. In Germany, sport plays a major role, for example. Football, cycling, hiking, jogging, tennis, swimming, riding and many other kinds of sports can be enjoyed with others. People often get together at sports clubs, but there are also many other different kinds of clubs and associations, and they provide very good opportunities to integrate. You will often be able to identify a club or association by the initials ‘e.V.’, which stand for eingetragener Verein, or registered club.


  • Sports clubs
  • Voluntary fire service
  • Traditional Bavarian clubs, such as a shooting club or young men’s association
  • Hobby clubs such as a tenpin bowling or allotment club
  • Music, singing, dancing or theatre clubs
  • Cultural associations
  • Environmental and conservation associations
  • Self-help clubs
  • Social and humanitarian associations
  • Friends’ associations, e.g. for nurseries, youth centres, hospitals

Personal responsibility and the welfare state

Germany is a welfare state. The state supports its citizens and ensures that they have equal opportunities. Various benefits are available to people in need, such as unemployment benefit, housing allowance and income support. These benefits are financed by the country’s taxpayers.

The German social security system works according to the principle of solidarity. The strong help the weak; the healthy help the sick. Every citizen must look after themselves first and foremost and must do everything they can to support themselves independently. This principle applies to the native population as well as immigrants.

A young migrant talking on a smartphone and advising refugees.
Everyone can help: immigrants who have been in Germany for some time can accompany newcomers when they have appointments with the authorities, for example.
Close-up shot: the hand of a young migrant. He is making notes in a diary.
Many young people work at clubs and associations on a voluntary basis, thereby actively supporting integration.

Volunteering: working for the community

Many people do voluntary work in Bavaria.Volunteering means working unpaid of your own free will for a good cause. A very large number of people volunteer at sports clubs, in child and youth services, in the area of conservation or by helping refugees. In Bavaria, almost half of all people over the age of 14 are involved in voluntary work.

Immigrants help immigrants

Immigrants who have lived in Bavaria for a while, speak German and know their way around their local area can help others get started. Many refugees and those entitled to asylum also help on a voluntary basis and make an important contribution to integration. There is a huge demand for people to interpret for newcomers or accompany them to appointments with the authorities, for example. Which department is responsible for a particular service? Where is the nearest supermarket? What is considered polite? You are warmly invited to share your knowledge with others who haven’t been here as long as you.

Where can I help?

Please ask the local asylum support network, asylum or immigration counselling centres, refugee and integration advisory centres, the full-time integration guides in the districts and independent cities, welfare associations such as Caritas, Diakonie or Arbeiterwohlfahrt, the church community or the municipality where and how you can help. By doing so, you can give back the help you received and will also discover new ways of integrating – perhaps volunteering at a sports club, looking after children, or providing nursing services or elderly care. There are many possibilities. Bavaria is helping – and welcomes your help.