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  • Writer's pictureRoot & Branch

Mohammed Suleyman - the High-Flyer

If the introductory course at Refugees go Solar+ had lasted one day longer, Mohammed Suleyman (32) would probably have built a solar-powered airplane. For the employer, the matter was clear: Suleyman would get the apprenticeship. The father of two, who came to Switzerland three years ago as a Syrian Kurd, is dedicated, motivated and multi-talented. In the meantime, Suleyman is employed by the Planeco company on a monthly salary and has thus been able to free himself from social welfare. However, he has by no means exhausted his potential.

«As a boy, I often dreamed of traveling to Europe and living there. In Syria, I was a "maktumin" - a stateless Kurd without papers. I did all kinds of jobs to survive: Distributing newspapers, working in construction, in restaurants, and as an electrician. The latter was my favorite job.

When the war started, I fled to Europe. The journey was not as carefree as I had imagined as a boy. It cost me a lot, money and energy. But in Europe I felt like a human being again.

After a stopover in Turkey, where I was able to work as an electrician again, I came to Switzerland - the land of security and democracy. Here I got to know the organization Root & Branch and qualified for a Fast Runner program.

I had actually thought I would have to be more patient until I found work in Switzerland. But I was able to experience that every path you take in Switzerland is built on solid foundations. If you follow it properly, it will lead you to your goal. To this day, I can hardly believe that I have a job, that I am united with my family and that I am safe.»

FastRunner-Programme: Sustainable Labour Market Integration of Refugees

Our Fast-Runner programs, such as Refugees go Solar+ (RGS+), offer motivated participants of our inclusion programs the opportunity to apply for employment or vocational apprenticeships through an on-the-job qualification internship with our partner organizations. During the internship, participants are employed and paid within the framework of recognized integration programs. In the event of subsequent employment, Root & Branch remains in contact with the company and the former interns. In case of non-employment, the intern returns to our integration program and can qualify for another FastRunner program.

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