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Nature-based integration

Nordic experiences and examples

image of Nature-based integration

Increased attention to, and careful planning of the integration of migrants into Nordic societies is ever more important. Nature based integration is a new solution to respond to this need. This report presents the results of a Nordic survey and workshop and illustrates current practices of nature based integration by case study descriptions from Denmark, Sweden Norway and Finland. Across Nordic countries several practical projects and initiatives have been launched to promote the benefits of nature in integration and there is also growing academic interest in the topic. Nordic countries have the potential of becoming real forerunners in nature based integration even at the global scale.

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Examples of current practices

In general, integration of refugees and immigrants is the responsibility of the 98 municipalities in Denmark. The municipalities are obliged by law (Lovbekg. Nr. 1094 af 7.10.2014) to focus on getting immigrants and refugees “ready for work” and “ensure education”. Accordingly, nature based integration is not part of the municipalities’ provided integration effort. However, some municipalities e.g. Frederikshavn and Skive in Northern Jutland are collaborating with the local unit of the Nature Agency, where refugees are “tested” for their readiness for work based on various nature management tasks (e.g. maintenance of paths and bogs or other smaller tasks) in the state owned forests around Frederikshavn and Skive (Naturstyrelsen, n.d.).

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