Rahma

2,000 Euro Prize 2015

Country: Austria

Region: Styria

Sector: Civil Society / Social Economy

Fields of action: Health

Project owner: Verein SOMM

Responsible person: Khatera Sadr

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What is it about?

There are barriers to overcome between women from migrant backgrounds and care and health personnel – barriers of language and also barriers of reality construction. Differences of cultural socialisation are mirrored in differences of perception grids. Rahma’s intermediaries – transcultural “experts” because themselves from migrant backgrounds – accompany patients to medical practitioners, to clinics, hospitals, or other social and health institutions. They encourage patients to make use of existing social and health infrastructure. And they – politely but stubbornly – enlighten doctors and care personnel about their prejudices. Overall, they thus strengthen and promote the processes of care and of healing.

Appreciation of the Jury

Integration that remains one-sided must fail. If the entire system, here the health system, is made inclusive, then everything becomes easier. Rahma’s intermediaries – conversant in cultures, traditions, religions – are like bridges, with integrative effect, between women from migrant backgrounds and qualified personnel. Both sides learn to converge. Doctors and care personnel will no longer fail their patients, and these will no longer be afraid to approach the alien care and health system. Enough remains to be done: to further add to the more than 700 clients accompanied, in 8 languages, in a year; to extend Rahma’s intervention zone; and to upgrade employment conditions of the presently six intermediaries.