Bethesda means house of mercy and is an NGO which aim is to assist migrants and refugees in their efforts to settle in Denmark
Bethesda is an NGO, non-profit organization, where people can start having a new network in Denmark and where refugees and asylum seekers can meet people in different life circumstances. They can start having new friends and making new networks, which is the basement of integration, and at the same time meet a lot of people from different levels of society.
“We provide English and Danish classes for free. We have had this cross-cultural organization for 27 years now. We have legal concealing in this place. One of our colleagues has already worked about 12 years in this field, and we also have two lawyers, who come here twice a month”, says Anders Graversen, leader of Bethesda.
Is it important that the students are Christians?
“Of course not, this is open for everybody, we have been seeing people from all over the world attending to our activity in 2016. We had participants from 111 different countries. We are seeing people from all over the world because we are welcoming people from all over the world no matter the religious background. We have Buddhists, Muslims, Christians, Jews, and Atheists.
Moreover, the educational background is also very different for the students who attending in our classes, we can see some of the students from Afghanistan or from Africa without having attended any education before coming to Denmark. They haven’t been at school in their life, and they can only speak their own language. Some people who are speaking Persian or Afghan or Arabic help them in our classes”, Anders Graversen tells.
New Times also met Hasan from Afghanistan, an asylum seeker who is learning Danish in Bethesda:
”I knew about Bethesda from my friend. I am Muslim and at first, I thought maybe is just for Christian people, but afterward I understood that it is for people with different religions. Moreover, the classes are useful for me and the condition and atmosphere are very friendly”, he says.
Bethesda’s address is: Rømersgade 17, 1362 København K The organisation running Bethesda is The Church Association for the Inner Mission in Denmark (in Danish this home mission is called: The Inner Mission)