When parents don’t speak German – foreign language services

Information, counselling and treatment services are also available to parents who do not speak German and are seeking help in their mother tongue for their child’s mental health problems. It’s worth searching for such services on the Internet.

Parenting and family counselling

More than 1000 parenting and family counselling centres throughout Germany offer help for children, adolescents and parents. This also includes foreign language resources. On the Federal Conference for Educational Counselling homepage, parents can use the search function to indicate the language in which they would like to receive counselling: www.bke.de (counselling centre search). If there is no counsellor who speaks your language available where you reside, language professionals can help. They take part in the conversations and translate what is said. In this context, they also help take into account any cultural or religious aspects and differences in the counselling. 

Psychotherapy

Some psychotherapists also offer their services in the native language of their patients. You can explore these possibilities on the websites of the psychotherapeutic practices. For example, you can search with the keywords: “Berlin Psychotherapy Turkish”.

When searching for a (child and adolescent) psychotherapist, for some states you can indicate the language in which your child would like to be treated on the page www.psych-info.de

These states include Berlin, Bremen, Hamburg, Lower Saxony, Saarland and Schleswig-Holstein. 

Unfortunately, in many places there are not enough psychotherapists who are native speakers of foreign languages. It is rarely possible to use language professionals in outpatient psychotherapy because statutory health insurance does not cover the costs.


Federal Chamber of Psychotherapists brochure “Paths to Psychotherapy”

The brochure of the Federal Chamber of Psychotherapists “Paths to Psychotherapy” provides a wide range of information about help for mentally ill people in Germany and is also available in English and Turkish:

www.wege-zur-psychotherapie.org/download-wege-zur-psychotherapie

Psychosocial assistance for refugees

If you have fled to Germany from another country as a refugee, you can contact a Psychosocial Centre for Refugees and Victims of Torture. Language professionals are available to serve you there. You can search for a centre near you here:

baff-zentren.org


“SeeleFon for Refugees” is a phone counselling service offered in German, English, French and Arabic that enables refugees to get information about help with mental health problems in Germany:

bapk.de/angebote/seelefon/seelefon-fuer-fluechtlinge.html 

Help in case of violence against women

The “Violence against women” helpline offers phone counselling in 17 languages: www.hilfetelefon.de/das-hilfetelefon/beratung/beratung-in-17-sprachen.html

Muslim pastoral care phone counselling

Muslim pastoral care phone counselling offers the opportunity to speak anonymously and free of charge with trained Muslim volunteers in case of mental health problems. Counselling is generally provided in German. On Tuesdays it also available in Turkish, while Arabic, Urdu and English are possible by arrangement at certain times:

www.mutes.de

Phone counselling in your native language

If you would like to speak on the phone in your mother tongue, you can find information about international help services on the homepage of Telefonseelsorge Deutschland:

www.telefonseelsorge.de/international-helplines

Informational materials

There are also foreign language informational materials for parents on the web, such as:


Parenthood and parenting

 

Infancy

  • Information sheets for parents of babies and toddlers from the Federal Centre for Health Education, including topics on sleeping, crying, child development and learning to talk. The information sheets are available in German, Turkish, Russian, Arabic and English: www.bzga.de/infomaterialien/kinder-und-jugendgesundheit/kurzknapp-elterninfo/
  • Short videos from the National Centre for Early Intervention on dealing with crying babies in German, English, French, Russian, Turkish, Arabic and Farsi: www.elternsein.info
  • Information with tips for parents on how to deal with crying babies from Hamburg Social Services in Arabic, English, Farsi, Polish, Russian and Turkish (the addresses listed for support refer to Hamburg): www.hamburg.de/schreibabys


Alcohol, drugs and addiction


Bullying at school 


Becoming a refugee and trauma


Domestic violence and parenting free of violence


Medical rehabilitation

Guide to medical rehabilitation for children and adolescents by the Ethno-Medical Centre in cooperation with the University of Lübeck in 10 languages: