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+352 621 981 482

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Reech eng Hand – Reaching Out

Welcome to “Reech eng Hand – Reaching Out” to Refugees.

Mir engagéieren äis mat Flüchtlingen – We are committed to helping recognized refugees and persons seeking international protection by receiving and supporting as well as giving advocacy for them in our pastoral and religious communities.

View the project in detail

What’s New? (Please see also the French version)

Welcome, accompaniment, training and integration
Progress Report 2016 of the Diocesan Refugee Project “Reech eng Hand”

  • Project “Time to breathe”, organized by Caritas Luxembourg, Reech a Hand, members of CLC
    - Are you a student or a young professional and wish to offer your time on Saturdays or Sundays afternoon to the benefit of young adults in distress?
    - Do you have free afternoons (from 2:30 pm to 5:30 pm) at times and wish to offer your time to young adults in distress?

You speak French or English, you know how to listen to others, and you like to meet people from a diverse cultural and religious background.
Together with our team.

Come and participate in the project “Time to breathe”: in a location of the Gare quarter we welcome during the afternoons refugees hosted at Hall 6 of Lux-Expo in Kirchberg, under house arrest but free to move during the day, and who undergo Dublin procedure.

In a friendly space, we want to offer these refugees a tea, drink a coffee together, listen to and encourage them, play games etc.,

Are you interested in joining our team? Then contact :
- Madeleine Selves, Tel./Whatsap : 621 694 712, email : magdagibert
- Agnes Rausch, Tel./Whatsap: 621358168, email : arausch, Messenger : Agnes Rausch Lisel
- Andrew Ndzebir, Tel./Whatsap : 691690365, email : andrew_vernyuy, Messenger : Lav Bam

Thanks a lot.

  • It is the first birthday of Reech eng Hand! Appraisal of a great year...

The activities in short during 2015

In 2015, the Catholic Church of Luxembourg started the project “Reech eng Hand – Give a hand to the refugees”. In front of the growing number of refugees fleeing the war, persecution or poverty and arriving in our country after a gruelling journey the Catholic Church of Luxembourg wanted to get involved, in the image of the Pope Francis, by the implementation of the diocesan project “Reech eng Hand - Reaching Out" to refugees.

“Reech eng Hand” a project with various dimensions…

  • The awareness and information of the pastoral and religious communities: through a flyer, a poster, stickers. But also through a website (, a phone line (+352 621 981 482), a newsletter and also through information meetings.
    The new T-Shirts Reech eng Hand (size S, M, L, XL, XXL) can be ordered.
    The price is 15€ (bankaccount CCPL of the responsible of the project Marie-Christine Ries (LU53 1111 0109 2359 0000) with the mention “T-shirts Reech eng Hand, your name, number and size of the T-Shirts”.
  • The training of committed volunteers in the parishes and religious communities: 70 persons have taken part to the first cycle of training (3 evenings/in Luxembourgish and French) as well as two days of training, given by 9 volunteer-instructors.
  • The welcoming and accompaniment of the refugees to install accompaniment and integration activities for the refugees:
    37 contact persons are active in parishes in the whole country.
    6 teams of volunteers (Bertrange-Strassen, Esch-sur-Alzette, Ettelbruck, Differdange, Rodange and the religious community Christ-Roi) have already regular contacts with refugees who are living in foyers.
    The local groups “Reech eng Hand” organize:
    -  Welcoming activities: meal distribution in certain foyers, encounter moments, etc.
    -  Integration activities: French lessons, accompaniment of persons or families, cultural activities and sportive activities (cultural visits, cooking, football, etc.)
  • The search for housing:
    To find housings for applicants for international protection or recognized refugees in making houses, apartments and grounds in our parishes available is a great challenge in Luxembourg.
    5 offers of housing for refugees have been made through private persons; the archbishopric has, for its part, made one house and one hall available. The hall has become a clothes collecting and sorting centre jointly managed by the Caritas and the Red Cross.
  • Fundraising:
    10 fundraising actions have been done (Vianden, Kaydall, Differdange, pastoral community Koerich, Wellscheid, Fischbach-Mersch). The fundraising is not the priority aim of the project but helps to support the Caritas’ projects (notably the language courses for the refugees) or local projects. Since then, it is also possible to support projects of local groups “Reech eng Hand” through the Saint Irmine Foundation.
  • Also expected to be done through the project, the search of work, as well as a political plea for the refugees have not been tackled given that the project only exists since September 2015.


We all have heard the calling of Pope Francis for the refugees (…) Come, let us react as Christians!
Archbishop’s word from 16th September 2015

The rereading and evaluation of these first months have uncovered signs of solidarity and mercy and I give thanks for them. And I discover concrete calls to go on and grow
Marie-Christine Ries, project supervisor

Successful events

  • Eid Mubarak!
    A Festival of breaking the fast was organized on July 6 by the initiative “Refugees Luxembourg” and Reech eng Hand, with the support of the City of Luxembourg.

The end of the Ramadan worthily celebrated on the 6th of July 2016.

To underline our mutual respect and our diversity in Luxembourg.
On the occasion of the end of the Ramadan (feast of the Aïd-el- Fitr), the initiative “Refugees Luxembourg” and “Reech eng hand” have organized a friendly encounter open to all (refugees, volunteers, from every religions or opinions…), and thanks to the city of Luxembourg.

For organizational and space reasons, the priority had been given to persons living in foyers which have no kitchen and for those who would be living on the territory of the city of Strassen. About 300 persons, a bit more than expected, gathered at the “Centre culturel de Bonnevoie” Wednesday, 6th July 2016.

After the organizers’ welcoming address and after the messages from some of the present officials of the different cults in Luxembourg the celebration could start: great influx at the volunteers team’s well prepared buffet, henna drawings on hands, face painting, djembe volunteers’ team, do-it-yourself workshops for the younger ones… It was truly a moment of pure joy spent together. Other moments will also be organized for the great celebrations of the other religions which are present in Luxembourg!

To read the article in French and see the photo gallery.

  • The stand “Reech eng Hand” first edition was a nice experience at the Festival des Migrations, des Cultures et de la Citoyenneté, on March 12-13 at LuxExpo, Luxembourg-Kirchberg.

The stand of the diocesan project “Reech eng Hand” has found a good resonance: there were volunteers, applicants for international protection from Eritrea, Afghanistan, Syria and Irak. Persons who wanted to get information about the project.

There were also some personalities: Lydie Polfer, Claude Meisch and Yves PIron (the Director of the Luxembourg Reception and Integration Agency (OLAI) and the Minister Corinne Cahen who has agreed to take part in our survey (here below) on the priority actions to implement by the government.

203 persons have agreed to take part in our survey on the subject of asylum policy and 608 votes have been given to the following question:
• Strengthen civil society (volunteers and NGOs): 47 votes (8%)
• Build decent housings: 98 votes (16%)
• Accelerate the procedure: 100 votes (16%)
• Offer training locations, internships, works: 150 votes (25%)
• Promote family reunification: 101 votes (17%)
Without any surprise, the 6 themes got similar results concerning the priority, with a little less importance given to strengthen the civil society and more to the language learning from at least one of the country’s official language and access to employement.
A team of “Reech ang Hand” has also taken part in the 13th March Postlaf 2016.

To read the article in French and see the photo gallery

Training sessions for volunteers

  • First training session “Reech eng Hand”, October 19 at the Centre Jean XXIII : read the article (in French)

De plus en plus de bénévoles se mobilisent

Premier bilan du projet diocésain «Reech eng Hand»

  • Read also the interview with Marie-Christine Ries, the project manager, by the SIR (Servizio Informazione Religiosa) Agency Europa:

Launch of the project “Extended hands”

“Reech eng Hand - Reaching Out”, a great challenge

The Catholic Church in Luxembourg participates in this project in the spirit of solidarity with thousands of people who have fled their countries because of war and persecution.

A great challenge for each of us, for our pastoral and religious communities.
A beautiful challenge because this project takes us back to the fundamentals of our Christian faith (“Truly I tell you, whenever you did it to one of these little ones who are my brothers, it is to me that you did it.”(Matthew 25:40).
Christ calls us to give time, attention and resources, but also to work creatively with other people and institutions.
With Christ we finally discover other cultures and habits and broaden our horizon.

But it is also, of course, a great challenge to dare to welcome and assist these often traumatized people in their new lives in Luxembourg, in the respect of their dignity, and probably in the long term. It is also a challenge for the Church to make its voice heard, asking policymakers for more humane and solidary migration and asylum policies.

A working group coordinates and supports the project in the diocese but “Reech eng Hand - Reaching Out” first and foremost relies on the commitment of parishes, associations and religious communities.

Want to know more and lend a hand?
You will find the project in detail on this website. Please contact your parish.

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