Fair Welcome wants everybody to be and feel welcome and included. That is what we strive and work for.
Thousands of refugees are fighting for dear life along the shores of Europe at this very moment. They fight for their own survival, and that of their loved ones. We fight to make the welcoming of the refugees warm and fair, both here and abroad. At the same time there is another large group of people in Denmark, such as the homeless and the lonely, who find themselves on the fringes of the society and community. They are a vulnerable group, and they also need to be seen, heard, met and included.
That is why Fair Welcome strives to include, activate and stimulate.
Everybody deserves a warm and fair welcome.
We as people need to stand side by side. We need to meet our fellow human beings with open arms, warmth, joy, and help them instead of shutting them out. In the western world, we are becoming increasingly individualized to a point where it has become a way of life. Our primary focus is on ourselves and our own needs. We turn inwards and a substantial amount of our time and focus are centered on our own digital world. The broader community is thus struggling, and as a consequence we often forget and don’t see that many people do not have the same resources and opportunities that we ourselves have. Many people do not have solid networks they can turn to. Therefore, they need a helping hand; they need to be seen, heard, and helped. They need us to help them be part of our community. They need our will to include them.
Fair Welcome’s mission is to meet people where they are and help them the best way we can through smile, openness, help, emergency relief and other activities. We work to spread the message and notion that all people are welcome regardless of where they are from, what they are fleeing, and who they are. Irrespectively of one’s religious and political beliefs, social and cultural affiliations or skin colour, we all deserve to be part of a community and to be met with warmth and acceptance.
Fair Welcome strives to put focus on and emphasize the need for humanity both in the way we meet the world and each other. Humanity is vital, and it does not matter if it is through a grand or smaller gesture – the important thing is that something is done. Fair Welcome continuously selects cases and project to work with. At the moment, our two primary projects are welcoming refugees that come/flee to Europe, and helping lonely people forego/out of their isolation and become a part of the community.
There is no better feeling than to be seen and met by a person who does not judge you, but sees you for who you are, and meet you where you are; someone who greets the love in you from the love in them. A meeting between two equals – a joyous and curious meeting. An eye contact that says “hi and welcome. I am here right now, in this moment, for you. You are safe with me, I do not judge you. I meet you with an open heart, and I wish you nothing but the best.”
How many of us remember this in our everyday lives? Many of us are pre-occupied with judging each other and ourselves, not least. What if our system primarily radiated love and appreciation – both for ourselves and others?
Maybe you have experienced a smile from a stranger brightening your whole day? Or a bus driver who sang and a song that spread good vibes in the bus? Or maybe someone, unexpectedly, helped you out? Maybe you have received a compliment from someone you initially thought didn’t like you? Or perhaps there was once that one time when someone looked you in the eyes and really saw you, and that meant the world to you?
Everybody has experienced something that made them feel genuinely welcome, but perhaps not as often as one could hope…
Fair Welcome extends a helping hand to vulnerable and marginalized groups, and we work towards building bridges between them and the society and community the find themselves on the fringe of. When you are in the periphery it can be incredibly difficult to see how and where you fit in and can be a part of the community. Fair Welcome believes that we are stronger if we stand united as a WE instead of distinguishing between THEM and US. Therefore, we work to establish social platforms from where inclusion and unity can grow through various projects, so that everybody can get a fair welcome in the community.Mission:
A lot of organizations do a wonderful job of collecting and distributing various kinds of emergency relief. Our specialty is to pick up and run with the ball after the emergency relief and collections. The vulnerable and marginalized groups in our society need to be a valid part of our society, community, and unity - it is here the job of Fair Welcome begins.
At Fair Welcome we have a minimum of bureaucracy. This allows us to put good ideas into action fast. We do not spend our time talking about what to do - we do it.
Further, Fair Welcome is a grassroots movement which doesn’t take a political, religious or cultural stand point. We do not choose sides, but we fight for inclusion and unity. Our hope is that a united WE will spread throughout our entire society and subsequently surpass boarders.
Our 'minimum bureaucracy' means that we are first movers in several instances. We were the first to launch the initiative #festmedenflygtning as a part of our charity concert It’s In Your Hands. The thought behind the initiative was to welcome our newcomers and party with them. As their means are limited we encouraged all those who bought tickets to the concert to invite a refugee or newcomer along for free. We believe that through such acts, the newcomers will feel more included and thus be motivated and stimulated to partake actively in our society as well as contribute to the community. However, it all starts with a fair welcome.
We continuously select the causes we work with, and at the moment our two main focuses are newcomers and lonely people. Loneliness is a huge issue in this country, and we want to prevent anyone from being involuntarily isolated and lonely. These two groups of people need a helping hand.
Inclusion and a united WE are pivotal. Everybody deserves to belong. Everybody deserves the opportunity to be part of society in a constructive and meaningful way. For those reasons, the work in Fair Welcome is incredibly relevant and necessary. We will keep extending a helping hand and launch new projects and initiatives to help newcomers as well as other vulnerable and marginalized groups, such as the homeless and lonely.
Fair Welcome continues to launch new activities, projects and initiatives to promote and increase inclusion, unity, and community. On this page you can follow our work, and see which projects we have in pipeline and take a look at what we have already done.December 2015: Christmas-fun-and-decorating Day in Auderød Asylum Center
In the beginning of December, Fair Welcome arranged a day of Christmas fun in Auderød Asylum Center. Konsulenthuset Pia Vedelsparre donated 8 beautiful Christmas trees, Kop&Kande in Hellerup donated Christmas lights, which helped bring out the spirit of the holidays, and Fair Welcome donated – along with several private donors – decorations for the trees and the Asylum Center. It was a nice change of scenery compared to the everyday lives of the people in the Asylum center, and everybody had a good time.December 2015: Christmas Party at Auderød Asylum Center
It is of great importance to turn the lights back on in the eyes of those who fight an internal and external battle. They need normalcy in their lives, but they also need a party. That is why Fair Welcome arranged a Christmas Party in Auderød Asylum Center in December 2015. Karen Volf donated delicious cookies, Madkastellet came with a yummy and ecological rice pudding, Meyers gave us jam and cherry sauce for the rice pudding, and many private donors chose to collect and deliver beverages, powdered sugar, and last – but definitely not least- presents for all the children at the center. Santa Claus came all the way from Red Cross to distribute all the presents, and the rest of the day was filled with music, singing, joy and laughter.
It was the perfect way to kick-start the holidays.February 2016: Charity Concert It’s In Your Hands in Vega
The inflow of refugees, who reach the shores of Lesbos, Greece in rubber dinghies and fight for their lives on the boarders of Europe, urged Fair Welcome to plan and host a charity concert benefitting refugees; both here and abroad. We collaborated with Vega, who lent us their amazing venue, and on Thursday the 11th of February 2016 the venue was packed with happy and excited people. On stage were some of the biggest artists in Denmark such as D-A-D, Wafande, Pharfar, Aura, Thomas Buttenschøn, Søren Huss, Baby in Vain and many more. We had invited several asylum seekers and newcomers, and everyone who bought a ticket could invite a refugee to participate, free of charge. We did this under the hashtag #festmedenflygtning as we wanted newcomers and “old timers” to have a blast together. And they did! Everybody sang and danced together. There was no US and THEM and no barriers. All there was was good vibes and cohesion.Project to come
Fair Welcome is collaborating with Il Buco on the new, exciting project Cooking for Cohesion, which start in late spring and continue throughout the summer. It will all take place at Il Buco on Islands Brygge, and the cooking will be done by a group of our newcomers, who will cook and serve dishes from their home countries. The dates for Cooking for Cohesion will be:
We have room for 100 people at each dinner. Tickets cost 200 kr for adults and 100 kr for children, and reservations must be made via firstname.lastname@example.org. So hurry up and get your ticket before they get sold out.
We look forward to welcoming you to an afternoon filled with delicious food in a cozy atmosphere.Cuttin’ for a cause
Many of the newcomers have a high sense of hygiene and vanity. For obvious reasons both things have not been possible for a long time. At the same time, we also have a lot of homeless people who do not always have the privilege of personal grooming. However, such groomings are important to ensure a form of normalcy and strengthen person dignity. Therefore, Fair Welcome plans to team up with various hairdressers-to-be, who will go out and meet the newcomers and homeless where they are and cut their hair. It is important to take care of the outside as well as the inside, and this initiative will help that.Don’t label
Soon, Fair Welcome will launch a big campaign called Don’t Label. We will tell you more when the launch date approaches. We are very excited about it and cannot wait to show it to you, so stay tuned.Collections and donations
Since its beginning, Fair Welcome has worked with a couple of asylum centers: Sigerslev, Auderød and Avnstrp. These are collaborations that we are very happy with and proud of, and soon we will expand with the newly opened Esbønderup. On behalf of them we have collected clothes, kitchen supplies, shoes, computers, iPads etc. that have been given to those living in the centers. The donations means the world to them, and it makes a great difference in their everyday lives, so we are pleased that we can help collect and distribute. Luckily, a vast majority of people want to donate. However, in order to administrate all the donations, Fair Welcome has had to make the decision to only collect donations after consulting the asylum centers and also hearing what they need. If you want to make a donation, we suggest that you keep an eye on our Facebook page as that is where we will announce collections. Nevertheless, we wish to say that it is touching how many people wish to help.
Charline works as a sustainable lifestyle expert and further produces the most sustainable clothing line in the world, Protect. She is a front runner for new, sustainable initiatives to improve our consumer habits. In 2011, Charline travelled to Nepal for the first time. While there, she received Tibetan refugees. This caused her to re-think her own life, and she decided that she would never again contribute to the poor conditions for both people and the environment.
Anya has worked with people for many years. When she went to Lesbos in 2015 and saw the horrible conditions refugees live under, it was only natural for her to partake in the emergency relief and, subsequently, to work to better the conditions of those less fortunate. That is why she became a member of Fair Welcome. In her daily life, she works as a freelance graphic artist. She also owns a company where she advises and teaches people the connection between body and mind.
Lars has always been engrossed with and driven by change. That is one of the reasons why he became involved with Fair Welcome. He believes in creating a united WE, which starts from the bottom and manifests itself to all corners of society. In his day-to-day life, he works as a strategic advisor and has, amongst other things, founded Small; a media bureau that specialises in strategic communication and online marketing.
Søren believes in a sustainable lifestyle and production that must never harm neither people nor the environment. He became engaged in Fair Welcome as he sees a natural link between social responsibility in production and helping those on the fringes of society. When he is not working for Fair Welcome, he runs a showroom in Copenhagen, solely displaying sustainable and up cycled products.
Eva became a part of Fair Welcome because she sees the strength and beauty in diversity and in embracing it. For her, one of the pillars of a strong, efficient and functioning society is unity. That is why it is only natural for her to work for and emphasise humanity and inclusiveness. Other than working with Fair Welcome, Eva is an image and brand advisor, freelance writer and has a MA in Law.
I am dedicated to working with refugees, and it is this in particular that has motivated me to volunteer at Fair Welcome. In my daily life, I work as a consultant at the Danish Refugee Counsel. Additionally, I teach religion and cultural understanding. I life in Copenhagen with my family, and I work hard to support and bring forth a divers and outward-looking Denmark and local community that stretches out beyond itself.
You can support Fair Welcome's work in several ways:
You can donate money via either mobile or pay a direct transfer to our account.
You can donate as a company or private person.
All donations go directly to Fair Welcome's work which is 100% volunteer based.
We thank you in advance for your help.
You can also support Fair Welcome by becoming a member. As a member you have an impact on the development of the organization. You will receive our newsletter four times a year and you have the option of actively participating in our ‘membership democracy’ at the general assembly and steering committee meetings.
Fill out the form below to become a member and donate a minimum of 200 kr a year.
You can also choose to become a Supporting Member and make a one-time-donation.
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The rescue efforts on Lesbos have changed since Fair Welcome’s first trips. It is much more organized now, and we have mostly withdrawn from it. However, you can still become a volunteer on Lesbos through Fair Welcome. Due to the more organized rescue efforts, the Greek Government has issued specific rules and regulations for volunteering. You have to volunteer a minimum of 4 weeks and you have to finance the trip yourself. We recommend that you fundraise through social media platforms and if you wish, Fair Welcome can do it for you. We also have various collaborators, approved by the Greek Government, who work in the camps on Lesbos. If you decide to go, we can get you in touch with them.
As a volunteer you will mostly work in the camps, and the work will be rather practical such as cooking, serving, cleaning, handing out dry clothes etc.
The following is our suggestions for housing and transportation on Lesbos:Accommodation:
Some of Fair Welcome’s volunteers have been to Lesbos themselves. You are more than welcome to contact us if you want to meet some of them and talk about what possibly awaits you on Lesbos.
Further, the situation on Lesbos is very serious and possibly traumatic. We recommend that you consult a psychologist both before and after your trip. We call it brief/debrief, and we will help you with it.
Thank you for your commitment and drive.