Single Parents in Frankfurt

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1 Single Parents in Frankfurt INFORMATION AND ADDRESSES DEPARTMENT OF WOMEN'S AFFAIRS

2 Acknowledgements Issuer City of Frankfurt am Main Department of Women's Affairs Reference Department of Women's Affairs Hasengasse Frankfurt am Main Telephone: + 49 (0) Fax: +49 (0) Internet: We do not claim the contents to be exhaustive and cannot guarantee the accuracy of all statements. Concept and Implementation Bettina Eichorn, Department of Women's Affairs Photos - The Department of Women's Affairs Sonia Diaz and Esther Zeschky, both of Frankfurt Design, illustration and text Opak Frankfurt Printing Central-Druck Heusenstamm As of 8/2010

3 FOREWORD FROM THE MAYOR City of Frankfurt am Main Dear single mothers and fathers, The times where single or divorced mothers were a small group are long gone. The population statistics show us that at the end of 2009, there were about 15,000 single parents with children under 18 in our city. Relative to the total number of 366,500 households in Frankfurt, that does not seem like much. The picture is different when looking at the 64,000 households with children: parents of single children are nearly a quarter of this population; 24 percent of all families in Frankfurt, i.e. one in five children living in single parent families. It is also interesting that two-thirds of all single parents are German, while one-third are foreign nationals. In both groups, the proportion of mothers to fathers is the same: for every nine single mothers, there is one single father. The lifestyles and circumstances behind the data are numerous and not suitable for stereotypes: single parents may be separated, divorced or widowed. Some of you are quite happy as single parents, while others want a partner to share the responsibility. Many studies have shown an increased risk of poverty among single parents, especially mothers. The following are listed as reasons for the lack of jobs: lower pay for women, the risks posed by lack of maintenance payments and the issue of child care. Frankfurt has put a lot of effort into this area, and I am pleased that the expansion of child care has progressed faster than expected - particularly in the number of childcare spaces for children under three years of age. In addition to structural changes, a general life skills handout has been requested. Alleinerziehende in Frankfurt Informationen und Adressen [ Single Parents in Frankfurt - Information and Addresses ] will inform you of the existing services offered to single parents in Frankfurt as well as assist you in finding a suitable match, if needed. Yours truly, Jutta Ebeling 3

4 Dear readers, Frankfurt is a city with a wide range of services to offer. Sometimes this can be a problem: you just cannot be aware of everything there is. It is especially disappointing if an existing service could improve your situation. This is why we created our new guide. Alleinerziehende in Frankfurt [ Single parents in Frankfurt ] provides information on benefits and services that fathers and mothers should be aware of. It also contains the addresses where you can find more information and, if appropriate, where you can make a request. We also hope that professionals from various fields will find useful information in our brochure for their work. We know that statements sometimes have a limited shelf life, such as if legal situations like current custody rights or rules change. In some cases, they may even be changing as you are reading. However, we wanted to give a better orientation, not just concrete facts and figures. See our Frauen-Guide [Women's Guide] for more addresses that might be useful to you. We thank the local Frankfurt chapter of the Verband alleinerziehender Mütter und Väter [Association of Single Mothers and Fathers], which has provided us with its assessments and expertise from years of consulting and lobbying work. A big thank you also goes out to all employees in offices, institutions and initiatives, who answered thousands of questions in a patient, competent and friendly manner. We hope that our new brochure is useful to you, and welcome your feedback. Department of Women's Affairs Department of Women's Affairs Gabriele Wenner Director of the Department of Women's Affairs Bettina Eichhorn Secretary for Education and Employment 4 INTRODUCTION TO THE DEPARTMENT OF WOMEN'S AFFAIRS

5 FOREWORD 3 INTRODUCTION 4 SEPARATION AND DIVORCE Advice and help 7 Legal advice 7 Custody 9 Access rights 9 Maintenance law 10 PUBLIC SERVICES Pension for widows and half-orphans 12 Parental benefits 12 Unemployment benefit I 12 TIP Yellow Pages for families and children 10 TIP Caroline Hansellmann Foundation 13 Unemployment benefit II 14 Social welfare 16 Child benefit 16 Supplementary child allowance 17 Maintenance advance and deficiency 17 Tax relief 17 Housing benefit 18 Frankfurt-Pass 18 TIP Orphanage Foundation 18 EMPLOYMENT AND CAREER Advice and guidance 19 Returning to work 20 Education/training and qualifications 21 Promoting further education 22 Academic, vocational and higher education 23 German as a second language 24 CHILD CARE Child care facilities and day care 25 Registration and admission to the day care centre 26 TIP Creative Fashion Workshop 26 Parent fees at day care centres 28 Day care options and fees 28 Additional options for child care 29 TIP Newfoundland 29 All addresses beginning on page

6 HOUSING 30 TIP Frankfurt Social Market 30 HEALTH, ILLNESS, PREVENTION Early development 32 Sick child/sick parent 32 Treatments and Health Counselling 33 TIP Family Market 31 PREGNANCY AND MATERNITY LEAVE Pregnancy and abortion counselling 35 Material assistance for pregnant women 35 Maternity leave and maternity benefits 36 Preventive services, prenatal care 37 NON-GERMAN RESIDENTS Residency and family law 38 Separation and divorce 39 Parental custody and visitation rights 40 Maintenance 40 Fear of child abduction 40 Public Services 41 Advice and help 42 Legal advice 42 COUNSELLING AND HELP TIP Frankfurt Table 43 Educational advice/ advice for parents, children, young people 44 If you are disabled 45 In cases of domestic violence 46 If unemployed or in debt 46 EDUCATION AND CONTACT 48 VACATION, HOLIDAY, FREE TIME 49 ADDRESSES 52 RECOMMENDATIONS 63 TIP Culture Pass 49 6 CONTENTS...

7 SEPARATION AND DIVORCE Separation and divorce brings huge demands, from finding a new perspective to re-organizing everyday life, as well as resolving legal and financial issues. It is not always possible to find an amicable resolution to problems. In the following you can find details about counselling and legal services in addition to some important family rights laws. ADVICE AND HELP The Children and Youth Services Act guarantees all parents, children and young people free, confidential and expert advice and support in all matters of raising children and of living together, for questions about partnership, separation and divorce, and for questions about parental custody, access and maintenance. You can contact any of the nine social welfare offices, 15 educational guidance centres (see page 44) as well as a number of other advisory services. Sozialrathäuser [social welfare offices], Kinder- und Jugendhilfe Sozialdienst [child and youth social services] Erziehungsberatungsstellen [educational guidance centres] Pro Familia Counselling and Meetings for Women, Caritasverband Frankfurt [Caritas Association Frankfurt] Beratungsstelle für Frauen [Women's Counselling Centre] at the Diakonisches Werk Frankfurt Evangelisches Zentrum für Beratung und Therapie [Evangelical Centre for Counselling and Therapy] Crisis and Counselling at the Haus der Volksarbeit Internationales Familienzentrum [International Family Centre] Familienzentrum Monikahaus [Monikahaus Family Centre] Arbeitskreis Partnerschaftskrise, Trennung, Scheidung [Working Group for Partnership Crises, Separation and Divorce] (fee-based) Väteraufbruch für Kinder [Fathers' Initiative for Children] Informationszentrum für Männerfragen [Information Centre for Men's Questions] Verband binationaler Familien und Partnerschaften, iaf [Bi-national Families and Partnerships Association, iaf] Verband alleinerziehender Mütter und Väter [Association of Single Mothers and Fathers] (VAMV) You can also use the free and anonymous telephone counselling help line twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week: Telephone or LEGAL ADVICE Social welfare offices and information centres provide information on the broad guidelines of the law. Binding individual advice may only be provided by solicitors, as required by laws governing legal consultation. Legal advice and legal clarification of rights are always provided at a cost. Those with low incomes All addresses beginning on page

8 may be entitled to legal aid and procedural cost assistance. The application for legal aid must be filed with the district court. If it is approved, you will receive a certificate of eligibility with which you can go to a solicitor of your choice. Subject to the current individual contribution of 10, they shall be obligated to provide qualified legal advice. Under certain conditions, the court and legal costs of a trial are borne by the Treasury. Amtsgericht [district court], Rechtsantragsstelle [legal claims office] Legal advice for low-income residents provided in German for 10 or without charge Rechtsauskunftsstelle des Frankfurter Anwaltsvereins [Frankfurt Bar Association Legal Advice Centre] Addresses of specialist solicitors (in all subject areas and in many languages) are available at Some counselling centres regularly organise free or inexpensive counselling appointments by solicitors specialising in family law, for example Verband alleinerziehender Mütter und Väter [Association of Single Mothers and Fathers] Beratungsstelle für Frauen [Women's Counselling Centre] at the Diakonisches Werk Frankfurt Verband binationaler Familien und Partnerschaften, iaf [Bi-national Families and Partnerships Association], iaf (international family law) 8 SEPARATION AND DIVORCE...

9 Legal advice for children and young people, either on their own or accompanied by parents, for all children's questions, not just family law issues, at Frankfurter Kinderbüro [Frankfurt Children's Office] Deutscher Kinderschutzbund [German Child Protection Association] CUSTODY Upon separation/divorce, married parents generally have the same parental concerns as any other parent. Decisions of fundamental importance must be made by both parents by mutual agreement. Day-to-day matters are decided by the parent with whom the child normally resides. Counselling and support for a shared custody and access plan can be found at Sozialrathäuser [social welfare offices], Kinder- und Jugendhilfe Sozialdienst [child and youth social services] Counselling centres (see above) solicitor Common custody arrangements don't always prove to be the best solution. Therefore, full or partial parental custody can be transferred to one parent on request. Amtsgericht [district court], Familiengericht [Family Court] department If the parents are not married to each other upon the birth of a child, the mother automatically has sole custody - unless she agrees to joint custody (through the youth welfare office or a notary). This affidavit also applies in the event of separation. It can only be reversed through a judicial proceeding at the request of a parent. Amtsgericht [district court], Familiengericht [Family Court] department (Amendment to BVG [Federal Constitutional Court] Judgement of is being prepared) There are special provisions for unmarried teenage mothers. The custody can be transferred to the adult father of the child or to the grandparents (in a common household); otherwise the youth welfare office is the official guardian. ACCESS RIGHTS The parent who is not living with the child has a right of access to the child. The child himself/herself has a right to have contact with both parents. The specific contact arrangements need to be determined by the parents together. Support from Sozialrathäuser [social welfare offices], Kinder- und Jugendhilfe Sozialdienst [child and youth social services] Counselling centres (see above) Solicitor All addresses beginning on page

10 If the parents cannot agree upon access to their child, the option of chaperoned visits exists. Sozialrathaus [social welfare office], Kinder- und Jugendhilfe Sozialdienst [child and youth social services] Amtsgericht [district court], Familiengericht [Family Court] department MAINTENANCE LAW A new maintenance law has been in place since The priority is support for the child, regardless of whether his/her parents are or were married. The maintenance for the supervising parent (spousal support for married parents or maintenance for unmarried parents) is subordinated. The goal is that after a separation or divorce, both parents should have individual responsibility for their livelihood. The parent who does not regularly care for the child must pay child support. The amount is determined by the disposable income of the parent obliged to pay maintenance and the child's age, with amounts determined in the Düsseldorfer Tabelle [ Düsseldorf Table ]. The legal minimum support is currently 317 for children from 0 to 5, 364 for children from 6 to 11 and 426 for children from 12 to 17 years. The minimum rate for adult children still in school is 488. The maintenance may each be reduced by half the child benefit. For unmarried parents, paternity must be known or proven in order to assert a valid maintenance claim. TIP TIP Gelbe Seiten Familie & Kind [Yellow Pages for Families and Children] - new as of end of October 2010 The directory for families in Frankfurt and Offenbach is a project of Trifels Verlag in collaboration with the Frankfurt Children's Office. With more than 6,000 addresses on the topics of health, advice & assistance / offices & agencies, support and learning, arts & entertainment / games & sports, shopping and entertainment / dining & drinking. The directory is distributed free or charge in hospitals, kindergartens, schools, medical practices, businesses, retailers, at events and, for example, at the Frankfurt Children's Office as well. Upon request: Trifels Verlag, telephone SEPARATION AND DIVORCE...

11 The maintenance claims for the child from the liable parent can be taken over by the youth welfare office within the scope of an advisory guardian. The guardian helps to file the claims as well as in establishing paternity. This applies to children of all nationalities who reside in Germany. Sozialrathäuser [social welfare offices], Kinder- und Jugendhilfe Wirtschaftsdienst [child and youth economic services] If you continue to experience difficulties, you can pursue child support through the courts. This is also true under joint custody arrangements. In these cases, you must have the youth welfare office advisor or legal assistance intervene. Amtsgericht [District Court], Abteilung Familiengericht [Family Court department] If the child support is not paid regularly or is insufficient, single parents may apply for a maintenance advance or deficiency under the maintenance advance law. This will be paid for up to 72 months or until the child is 12 years of age. Children under 6 receive 133, after that, 180. This applies to children of all nationalities who reside in Germany. Sozialrathäuser [social welfare offices], Kinder- und Jugendhilfe Wirtschaftsdienst [child and youth economic services] The parent providing for the child is entitled to spousal or maintenance support, as long as the employment does not interfere with caring for the child. This applies up to the child's third birthday, in some cases even longer. After the child's third birthday, the parent has a fundamental obligation to work, though not necessarily full-time. If, for example, your child needs intensive care due to illness or if institutional child care is inadequate, this can also impact your maintenance as well as your employment for many years, as child care has been deferred and returning to work is very difficult. In many cases, when the excess of the other parent and the maintenance of your child are taken into account, you will be given no or inadequate maintenance. For more detailed advice: Sozialrathäuser [social welfare offices], Kinder- und Jugendhilfe Wirtschaftsdienst [child and youth economic services] Counselling centres (see above) Solicitor All addresses beginning on page

12 PUBLIC SERVICES The state benefits that you are entitled to must, as a rule, be distributed individually. The following serves as an initial guide. All relevant institutions are obligated to provide comprehensive counselling. PENSION FOR WIDOWS AND HALF-ORPHANS The widow/widower is entitled to benefits if he/she is able to prove that the deceased spouse has contributed to the insurance of contribution/substitute periods of the pension scheme for five years. The benefits also apply if the married couple lived separately. The following are taken into account when determining the amount and duration of the pension: age and employability of the survivors, raising a child up to 18 years of age or caring for a disabled child, as well as his/her own income. The deceased parent must also have fulfilled the five-year waiting period for payment of the half-orphan pension (up to 18 years of age; under certain conditions up to 27 years). For information and advice Deutsche Rentenversicherung [German Pension Insurance] Versicherungsamt der Stadt Frankfurt [City of Frankfurt Insurance Department] PARENTAL BENEFITS Single parents have the option of receiving 14 months of parental benefits. Those who are employed or self-employed receive 67 percent of their former taxable net income/net profits up to For those on low-incomes and those who are employed part-time with net incomes under 1000, a higher percentage is calculated. Those who did not have any earned income before the birth of the child recipients of ALG [unemployment benefit] II, students, housewives, or mothers with an extended career break receive minimum parental benefits of 300. This amount will not be included in the calculation for ALG II, housing benefit or maintenance payments. Upon request, the calculated monthly amount can be divided in two and the corresponding disbursement periods doubled. Please note: parental benefits will be deducted from ALG II recipients in Hessisches Amt für Versorgung und Soziales, Elterngeldstelle [Hessian Department for Care and Social Benefits, Parental Benefits Office] UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFIT I There are two different services and responsibilities for those who are unemployed and those seeking employment: unemployment benefit I from the Agentur für Arbeit [Employment Agency] and unemployment benefit II from the Rhein-Main Jobcenter GmbH. 12 PUBLIC SERVICES...

13 Unemployment benefit I (ALG I) is an insurance benefit based on the Sozialgesetzbuch [Social Security Code] III (SGB III). It is a temporary payment to someone who is unemployed, who has registered with the Employment Agency as being unemployed and who meets the qualifying period for the coverage, meaning that within the two years prior to registering as unemployed, they have contributed at least 12 months of unemployment insurance premiums. Unemployed persons with at least one child receive 67 percent of their fixed net income. The duration of benefits up to 50 years of age is a maximum of 12 months; after 50 years of age the benefit rises to a maximum of 24 months. Being unemployed, you will only be hired if you are available to work, that means you must always have child care secured! To ensure your claims, you must renew your unemployment status at least every three months. Important: Your unemployment benefit is based on your last income, provided you have paid at least 150 days/five months of unemployment insurance in the last two years. Otherwise a fictional, often lower value is used as the basis for measurement. Your 67 percent can also be much lower than expected, for example if you are unemployed after an extended period of parental leave. Also: The amount of unemployment benefit is also determined by how many hours a week you would like to work! If you have worked full-time before your unemployment and are now just looking for a part-time position, TIP One-time assistance of the Caroline Hansellmann-Stiftung [Caroline Hansellmann Foundation] The sole purpose of this independent foundation is support for single mothers (and now single fathers as well) and their children. You must be needy ; however, the income limits are more generous in size than in other cases. Support will be provided in the form that makes your life easier, for example furniture, household items, clothing or necessary medical treatment. Informal requests should be directed to the Jugend- und Sozialamt [Youth and Social Welfare Office], Stiftungsverwaltung [Foundation Assistance], Eschersheimer Landstraße , Frankfurt, Tel All addresses beginning on page

14 your unemployment benefit is reduced to reflect your intended work extent. Accurate information on the calculation of unemployment benefit I for individual cases is available through the Employment Agency counselling service - not just for when you are unemployed, but also for impending unemployment and other changes to your employment situation, such as for questions about severance agreements, off-periods or employment during parental leave. Agentur für Arbeit [Employment Agency], hotline , charges apply Filing for unemployment and application for ALG I at Agentur für Arbeit Frankfurt [Frankfurt Employment Agency], in the East, South and North client centres or in the Geschäftsstelle Höchst [Höchst Business Centre]. UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFIT II Unemployment benefit II (ALG II) is a public service based on the Social Security Code II (SGB II). In order to qualify, you must be 15 to 64 years old, able to work and in need of assistance; i.e. if you are healthy enough to complete at least three hours of daily work and cannot support your existence on your own. The spouse, partner and children up to 25 years of age who are eligible to claim benefits can also qualify. The claim covers the cost of living, health insurance, adequate housing and heating as well as additional requirement supplements and one-time services. In addition, those who earn very little or receive very little ALG I can receive an increased ALG II. In determining the benefit, the incomes and assets of all members of the group receiving the benefit are taken into account. Child benefit and maintenance are charged in full; there are exemptions for earned income. Under certain conditions when transitioning from ALG I to ALG II, there is a surcharge paid to ensure a smooth transition for two years. Please note: this temporary surcharge is likely to be phased out in The standard benefits are currently (as of 08/2010) 359 for individuals/single parents, 323 for adult partners, 215 for children aged 0 to 5 years, 251 for children aged 6 to 13, 287 for young people aged from 14 years to adulthood, 287 for young adults aged 18 to 25 years who live at home with their parents - or have moved out without agreement from the funding agency. 14 PUBLIC SERVICES...

15 Single parents have additional needs, meaning a more regular additional contribution. Depending on the number and ages of children, that equates to between 61 and 129 per month. Upon request, costs for overnight field trips for children are covered. Every child (up to 25 years of age) who is attending a general education or vocational school and does not have an education allowance will receive a school starter package of 100 per school year, which will be paid each August regularly. The perception of right of access after separation or divorce should also be ensured at an appropriate level (individual assessment of travel and accommodation costs). There is a one-time subsidy available for home furnishings upon request. This is provided for cases such as when there is no (sufficient) furniture available after separating and moving out of the shared flat All addresses beginning on page

16 or if a young pregnant woman or single parent moves out from the family of origin to establish her own first household. Pregnant women are also entitled to additional services, see chapter Pregnancy and Maternity Benefits. Even someone who does not receive benefits under the Social Security Code II currently can, under certain conditions, receive one-time services and additional requirement supplements. For example, this may apply to students. The employees at the Rhein-Main Jobcenter GmbH can advise you further. By the end of 2010, following a decision by the Federal Constitutional Court, the standard benefits for children and young people in particular will be reviewed and possibly revised or supplemented with additional services. Counselling on unemployment benefit II and applications at Rhein-Main Jobcenter, Höchst, North, East, South and West job centres SOCIAL WELFARE Assistance for livelihood, basic insurance in old age and for disability (social welfare) are state benefits based on the Social Security Code XII. Needy people who are (permanently) incapable of working at full-earning capacity, i.e. cannot earn a living, are entitled to standard benefits to meet everyday needs plus reasonable accommodation and heating costs. The services are comparable to those under unemployment benefit II. Single parents are also entitled to additional requirement benefits, reimbursement for overnight school trips for their children and the school starter package as well as subsidies for home furnishings. Sozialrathäuser [social welfare offices], Soziale Hilfen Wirtschaftsdienst [social welfare economic services] CHILD BENEFIT Child benefit exists for all children whose children have their primary residence in Germany. It provides 184 each for the first and second child, 190 for the third child and 215 for each additional child. All children up to 18 years of age will be counted for children in apprenticeships and studies up to 25 years of age and for unemployed children up to 21 years of age if they are looking for apprenticeships. Civil or military service may also result in extending benefits. For children who cannot support themselves because of a disability, it will be paid indefinitely. 16 PUBLIC SERVICES

17 The child benefit is paid to the parent with whom the child resides. The parent obligated to make cash maintenance payments may reduce their maintenance payments to half of the child benefit. Public service employees will receive the child benefit with their salary, all other parents must apply for it. Familienkasse der Agentur für Arbeit [Employment Agency Family Fund] SUPPLEMENTARY CHILD ALLOWANCE Parents with low incomes can receive a supplementary child allowance in addition to their child benefit (for unmarried children until their 25th birthday) of up to 140 per child. The prerequisite is that they are able to cover their own expenses with their income, but cannot cover those of the child or children. The supplementary child allowance is intended to prevent filing for ALG II. Maintenance and maintenance payments, however, will be charged in full. Those receiving the supplementary child allowance can also apply for housing benefit. The calculation requires extensive counselling in many cases. Familienkasse der Agentur für Arbeit [Employment Agency Family Fund] MAINTENANCE ADVANCE AND DEFICIENCY If the child support is not paid regularly or is insufficient, single parents may apply for a maintenance advance or deficiency under the maintenance advance law. This will be paid for up to 72 months or until the child is 12 years of age. Children under 6 years of age receive 133, older child receive 180. This applies to children of all nationalities who reside in Germany. Sozialrathäuser [social welfare offices], Wirtschaftsdienst für Kinder- und Jugendhilfe [child and youth economic services] TAX RELIEF Check your tax class - tax class 1 or 2 is correct depending on the specific situation. Those who were in tax class 5 while married should change this immediately upon separation; all wage replacement benefits are based on net income and are significantly lower in tax class 5. Single parents in tax class 2 are entitled to a relief amount equal to 1308 a year. The Tax Office also recognises incomerelated child care expenses for children up to 14 years old, up to a maximum of 4,000 per year, per child. (Collect evidence!) More information available from Tax Office All addresses beginning on page

18 HOUSING BENEFIT Housing benefit is available as a subsidy for rent or as charge grants for owner-occupied homes where the income does not exceed a certain amount and is not sufficient to cover the rent (or the accepted maximum rent). Someone who receives ALG II or social welfare is not entitled to claim housing benefit. Amt für Wohnungswesen [Department of Housing] FRANKFURT-PASS The Frankfurt-Pass is a service of the City of Frankfurt for low income households with primary residence in Frankfurt. The holder is entitled to many benefits: the Youth and Social Welfare Office's holiday card and the city library can be used free of charge; the entrance to swimming pools, zoo and palm garden costs 1 for adults and 0.50 for children. The entry fee is halved for many other city events and offerings. Courses at adult education centres and RMV monthly tickets are also reduced. The income limits are 1125 net for two-person households, 256 for each additional person. Those who receive ALG II, social welfare or ALG I and fall under the income limit are also eligible. The Frankfurt-Pass must be requested at the social welfare office in your catchment area. Sozialrathäuser [social welfare offices], information centres TIP One-time help from the Orphanage Foundation A new bed or a new desk because the old furniture has become too small, after-school care or orthodontic treatment - the Orphanage Foundation can provide grants for all kinds of things for children of single parents. The foundation grants are usually not sufficient for all needs. But in any case you can give it a try, give us a call! Stiftung Waisenhaus [Orphanage Foundation], information office for ambulatory funding, Tel PUBLIC SERVICES...

19 EMPLOYMENT AND CAREER ADVICE AND GUIDANCE The need for counselling and vocational (re-) orientation can arise from a variety of reasons, separation and divorce are just some of them. Perhaps you are also unemployed and looking for work. Or you had children very early and therefore have not obtained job qualifications. You may be dissatisfied with your work and are looking for a change. You may have immigrated to Germany and are looking for work for the first time. Depending on the situation, you have several options. If in the last few years you have been unemployed or underemployed and are now looking for a position, or even if you do have a job and are looking for a change, you can make an appointment for a personal interview at the employment office. Agentur für Arbeit [Employment Agency], Tel (charges apply) If you are unemployed and receive ALG I and no benefits, you will be advised at your local employment office, by appointment. If you receive ALG II, the staff at your local job centre will advise you through your personal contact persons. Rhein-Main Jobcenter GmbH, hotline (local call charges apply) You can also visit a counselling centre, which specialises in issues of professional development and (further) education. There you can give a detailed account of your current situation, your desires for the future and your goals. The City of Frankfurt Department of Women's Affairs promotes various education providers to assist you in identifying your skills and developing new perspectives: beramí - is especially familiar with migrant women's situations Frauen-Softwarehaus - counsels with a focus on IT skills jumpp Frauenbetriebe - supports the leap into independence Verein zur beruflichen Förderung von Frauen [Association for the Professional Advancement of Women] - supports New Ways, New Plans Expert advice has been offered for many years in the areas of school, work and study under the training advice of the Walter-Kolb Stiftung [Walter Kolb Foundation] All addresses beginning on page

20 The Hessencampus Frankfurt Initiative is relatively new; starting at the Bildungszemtrum Ostend/Volkshochschule Frankfurt [ Ostend Education Centre/Frankfurt Adult Education Centre ], the programme advises participants on training and lifelong learning. Bildungsberatung Hessencampus Frankfurt [Hessencampus Frankfurt Educational Counselling] As a migrant, you can also obtain information about schools, education, careers and employment at Migrant counselling centres Jugendmigrationsdienste [Youth Migration Services] (up to 27 years of age) In addition, many (further) education providers and institutional counsellors have their own offerings; they already have many clarifications spelled out. RETURNING TO WORK Those who were not working for family reasons who wish to be employed once again must answer several questions. The person responsible for labour market equality at the Employment Agency gives you the opportunity of a regularly scheduled meeting regarding your return to work. She has also organised a free lecture series on topics of interest entitled Biz and Donna. All dates are on the Veranstaltungen page at The brochure Durchstarten Familie und Beruf [Get up - Family and Work] and the information sheet 18 Frauen 20 EMPLOYMENT AND CAREER...

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