Work Experience for Refugees

Our project doesn’t just offer the possibility for intercultural exchange, but we also offer the possibility for some of our participants to gain experience in the Swiss work world, to participate in product development and design, and to learn how to develop different aspects of a business.


Until now, we have carried out our activities in the following ways:



Through a crowdfunding campaign that we carried out in September, 2016, we were able to offer a paid internship to Cisse Sekou, a tailor from the Ivory Coast who comes from a refugee background. Cisse is now a permanently employed member of our core team. We aim to hire more employees from a refugee background in the future.


GEP- Program

We work together with the Zurich-based organisation AOZ, under their GEP-Program to offer work placements to people with a refugee background.



From August 2018, Social Fabric is offering for the first time an official apprenticeship for a person who comes from a refugee background. (the title of the education is Bekleidungsnäher/in EBA).


Open Sewing Classes

Social Fabric Association has been working with refugees in Zürich since June, 2015. We offer a drop in sewing class for refugees every Monday and Thursday morning from 9.30 – 12.00 (except in July and December, when we are closed). Participants can learn how to make clothes and accessories using donated fabrics with the help of volunteers and the Social Fabric team.


German Courses and Sprachcafé

It’s important for us that we work together with our participants to develop programs that they need. One of the main needs of participants is to improve their German skills. We have therefore developed various language training possibilities including structured German courses and a weekly Sprachcafé. The Sprachcafé takes place every Thursday between 12:30 and 14:00, and facilitates open exchange and language practice – we always start the afternoon with coffee, tea, and cake.


Project ReThread

In our first Project ‘Rethread’, we developed T-Shirts which were designed by our participants. You can by one of these T-Shirts via the website


Do you want to volunteer for our refugee project?

20% of the sales price of these T-Shirts goes to the refugee designer, or to a non-profit organisation of their choice (depending on their permit status).We couldn’t run our refugee activities without the help of volunteers. Volunteering gives you a great opportunity to get to know new people, learn new skills and do something valuable. For volunteers who make a weekly commitment, we offer our membership for free during the volunteer period.


We need volunteers for our weekly Monday and Thursday morning sewing workshops; volunteers for this activity should have good basic sewing knowledge, good German skills and be ready to commit weekly for at least 4 months. On Friday afternoons (from 2pm to 4pm) we offer a Sprachencafé and for that we are looking for native German speakers to volunteer. In future we might expand the selection of the refugee activities to other days of the week and sometimes we have one time events when volunteers are also welcome. If you are interested in volunteering, or would like to know more about it, please contact Helka.


Do you want to support our refugee projects?

Send your donation to:


IBAN CH39 0839 0034 1225 1010 6


Social Fabric Association
Eichstrasse 29
8045 Zürich


or via PayPal:



Do you want to know more about our activities?

Find more Information in our annual reports:

Social Fabric Association – Jahresbericht 2017
Social Fabric Association – Jahresbericht 2016
or send an E-Mail with your questions to Justine.

Impressions of our refugee projects