Financial support for immigrants learning Faroese

26.01.2022 - 07:48
Financial support for immigrants learning Faroese
Minister hopes and expects Parliament will support his upcoming proposal to offer financial support for learners of Faroese as a second language
Faroese language students Liliane Joensen (left) and Jana Bustamante pictured ahead of yesterday’s exams

The mandatory language requirement proposed in the integration bill is a common concern in the immigrant community.

Many are finding it near impossible to balance a full-time job with language course attendance.

 >> SEE ALSO 2022 – a big year for integration

This view is echoed by Jógvan Sørin Hansen, who runs Tórshavn’ evening school programme.

“Studying Faroese as a second language requires 20 hours of study per week, which of course is not easy for full-time workers. This is the main reason why many do not complete their language studies,” he says.

“Study grants would enable immigrants to focus fully on their language studies and then work on the side while they acclimatise themselves to their new country.”

 >> SEE ALSO Language barrier has a ripple effect on newcomers

Education minister Jenis av Rana agrees, saying that making it easier to learn Faroese is an obvious way to promote integration.

“We in the Ministry of Culture and Education believe that if a mandatory language requirement is imposed on immigrants, it is only fair that we do what we can to them meet this requirement,” he says.

“We will be recommending financial support during the study periods in our review of the integration bill.”

 >> SEE ALSO Immigrants struggle to make use of their skills

The minister does not expect to see much resistance to this initiative in Parliament.

“The estimated annual costs of DKK 2-3 million would be a cheap price to pay because we all want our new citizens to feel at home as quickly as possible.”


Read the Faroese version of this article here.

Translated by

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