Top Ten Fun Facts Düsseldorf

This entry is part 7 of 8 in the series TOP TEN
  1. Officially, Düsseldorf has 600,000 inhabitants, however because of all the commuters travelling to and from their offices, there are about 200,000 people more are in the city on weekdays.
  2. Düsseldorf the advertising city – about 400 advertising agencies are based here, including international agencies as well as three of the largest agencies in Germany.
  3. the ‘KÖ’ is Germany’s busiest upmarket shopping street: it is nearly a kilometer full of international flagship stores and shopping centres
  4. ‘the longest bar in the world’ Düsseldorf’s Altstadt (Old Town) comprises over 300 bars and clubs in a very small area
  5. Düsseldorf itself is mentioned in the US- series ‘The Simpsons’ where it is the hometown of the German exchange student wearing Lederhosen.
  6. Wheels of joy play an important role in the city’s history: in 1288, when Düsseldorf won the battle of Worringen and received the town charter, children did wheels of joy. Even today, when you are strolling through the Old Town, children will offer to do cartwheels for one or two coins – and there is even an annual cart-wheeling tournament.
  7. It became the Capital of North Rhine-Westphalia although it is only the fourth largest city of NRW. It did so because it was the least destroyed city after World War II.
  8. Düsseldorf is in constant competition against Cologne. Both towns hate each other and compete when ever possible and in every matter possible against the other one.
  9. The Rhine-Promenade connects ‘The Old’ with ‘The New’ of the city. It leads from the Old Town to the modern Media Harbour and makes Düsseldorf a skater paradise.
  10. It was and is the home of many musicians: Robert & Clara Schumann, Felix Mendelssohn Bertholdy and Johannes Brahms as well as the modern bands of Kraftwerk, die Toten Hosen und Marius Müller Westernhagen called or still call the city home.


 “ich-will-deutsch-lernen” new onlineplatform for refugees and migrants

The German „Deutsche Volkshochschul – Verband”  provides a tool to support migrants and refugees in learning German. Name of the webportal is “ich-will-deutsch-lernen”. The available platform implied a German language course which helps to learn and improve German language skills, starting from level A1 to level B1. The Volkshochschul – Verband want to support the integration of refugees and migrants in culture and social living.
The content of the digital courses is according to the rules of integration courses in Germany.
Furthermore the portal offers an extensive range of material for alphabetisation. And last but not least the portal provides also one tool to improve German professional jargon. The user can choose out of 30 cross-sectoral scenarios and 11 professional communication activities.
Everybody may use the tool: do-it-yourself-learner, teachers and professional learning classes.
Teacher of integration courses and German courses have to register and build up their own class online. Then they are able to supervise their participants. Learners who start on their own will be supervised by tutors of DVV.

update: there are new features available

Pathways to Germany from outside EU – Part4 self-employed

This entry is part 4 of 4 in the series Pathways to Germany

You want to establish yourself in Germany as self-employed or freelancer and can prove sufficient financial means as well as a permit to exercise the profession? You are economically worthwhile in Germany and impact the German economy positively with your self-employment?

What do I need to do before going to Germany?

You first need to make an appointment at the German embassy in your country in order to apply for a visa. The visa is granted for 1-3 months. Bear in mind waiting and processing times at the embassies and do not do it last minute before leaving to Germany.

What do I need to do once I entered Germany?

After having entered Germany it is of utmost importance to register with the municipality of the city as soon as possible. This is a condition to register the with foreign nationals’ registration authority, which is responsible for you in Germany.

Registration at the municipality office – why is it that important?

Handy hints:

  • make appointments early in time in order to circumvent long waiting times and delays.
  • in order to facilitate and accelerate the process you can inform yourself about the forms you need online at various platforms such as gohelp.y. You can print all forms and checklists at home and take them with you for your appointment.


Berlin International Games Week

The annual Berlin International Games Week will start at the 18th of April. For seven days Berlin will welcome representatives  from the digital industry as well as games enthusiasts.
More than 10,000 visitors – developer, publisher, investors and gamers are expected. There are more than ten events in one week at different venues in Berlin, ranging from conferences and recruitment events to games festivals and championships.
Different events will happen. There will be events for games enthusiasts, development conferences open to professional visistors only, a recruitment day for job seekers. Furthermore will happen this year a special recruitment event “Womenize” for female talents.

Do you have digital know how?

 EUROPASS: self-assessment of digital competences

You can learn more about your own digital competence using the self-assessment of digital competences on Europass. This can be helpful for getting a job.
Europass includes five documents to make your skills and qualifications clearly and easily understood in Europe. You can create your CV online using tutorials or download the template, examples and instructions. Furthermore you can use the Language Passport. It is a self-assessment tool for language skills and qualifications. You can create your Language Passport online using tutorials or download the template, examples and instructions. Since last summer it is possible to carry out a self-assessment of digital competences (information processing, communication, content creation , security, problem solving) through the Europass CV online editor, using levels and descriptors.

The Europass celebrated its 10th birthday last year. Since it was designed more than 100 million visits were recorded, and 50 million CVs were created online in 27 languages. This success is largely due to the active support of National Europass Centres.

In every European country is a  National Europass Centre – the first point of contact if you want to learn more about Europass.


The European Centre for the Development of vocational Training (CEDEFOD)

Opening Bank account in Germany

The European Parliament has decided to introduce the basic account between the start of 2016 and September 2016 at the latest. A non-discriminatory application should then legally be possible for every EU citizen.

To date it has not been possible for every citizen to obtain a current account in Germany. There had to be fullfilles some condition until the end of 2015:
Stipulation of the permanent place of residence
In order to personally identify yourself, production of an identity document containing your surname, forename, address, date of birth and a biometric passport photograph
Proof of creditworthiness/solvency.

To date there has been no legal right to a current account in Germany! Salary payments, welfare benefits, rent payments, etc. become a problem for affected persons. With effect from 2016, however, EU citizens will have a national right to a current account through the basic account.
What does a basic account include
Objective of a basic account is to fundamentally allow the holder to take part in cashless payment transactions. This will probably involve a current account on a credit basis. You can therefore dispose of the money which is actually in your account.
The basic account will enable you to
– make deposits and payments (salary payments, receipt of welfare benefits, etc.),
– transfer money and make payments by direct debit (rent payments, invoices, etc.).
The cash card with the basic account
You will normally receive a cash card (Maestro or giro card) with your current account.


Welcome Service in Stuttgart on Tour

Consultation hour of Stuttgart’s Welcome Service  

Since October of 2015 WSRS (Welcome Service Rigion Stuttgart) offers a regulary consultaton for international specialists or professionals of the region of Böblingen, Esslingen, Göppingen, Ludwigsburg and Rems-Murr.

If you and your family are living in one of these areas we will have the possibility the get a contultation free of charge.

Next consultation of WSRS will be in Göppingen 9th of March 2016 from 8 a.m to 12 a.m.


Self-employed person or freelancer in Berlin

You want to work in Berlin as a freelancer? You want to start up your own business in Berlin?

So what will you have to do? Who will support or assist you?

There are some possibilities you can choose. One of them is the “We start a business in Germany” platform. It will guide you step by step through the company start-up process. Using the initial questions of “What can I do?”, “What do I need?” and “What comes after?”. You will find extensive information about a range of topics including right of residence, required qualifications and prerequisites for your planned self-employment.

The information has been prepared specifically for people from EU and non-EU countries and is currently available in English.

Enter the internet platform We start a business in Germany

Another platform is the single contact platform (EA Berlin). It will guide you through the administrative demands you will have to meet especialy in Berlin. There is a film explaining the procedure a bit. It is also in English.

If you have foreign qualifications and wish to have them recognized in Germany you can get in touch with the IQ network. It will assist you in many issues regarding your recognition. Another possibility is the Recognition Finder, it will navigate you quickly to the appropriate authority responsible for your case. You also have access to all the information you need about the recognition procedure.