Summary of article in Billed Bladet #36, 2010.
Mary gav sin bryllupsgave til flygtninge - Mary have her wedding present to refugees.
Written by Ken Richter.
M&F were presented with a gift cerificate for 50.000 to use in shops in Viborg. (*) And now that certificate or rather the amount went to refugees: "Two years ago I visited refugees in Uganda. So I have seen with my own eyes how even small amounts can make a big difference. That's why I believe it's appropriate that I hand over the wedding present we got from Viborg Handel = trade association to the refugees is four villages in Liberia".
That was applauded by those present in Viborg Theatre where this took place.
Mary spend the whole day in Viborg, where a million DKK has been collected for the benefit of refugees in Liberia.
She started out by visiting Bjergneæsskolen, the 150 pupils there from 9. and 10 grade had lived for 48 hours like refugees. Learning how to cope with not being fed adequately, don't know what time it is, don't know what will happen and having nothing to do - just waiting.
Mary said: "The pupils experienced what it means to be a refugee, with lots of uncertainties and hunger. It's also incredible that they after just a few hours without a watch lost the sense of time, so I'm certaing they saw their own lives in perspective and that they in the future will have a big understanding for it means to refugees".
Then she visited the House of Volunteers and met a family of refugees from Congo, eight in total, who had been refugees in Rwanda for tvelve years before ending up in a village near Viborg.
Mary said: "They have fought a hard struggle and lived under a big psycological pressure. It was a big experience to hear about their life and the journey to Denmark. It was enriching to hear about the Danish contact family which teach the refugees about Danish culture and new values. Let's have more of that". (**) Jeanine and Paul Nkubana have six children, all born in refugee camps. She added: "The children are doing well at school and have Danish friends. The big boys are also good at playing soccer". (***)
Mary was asked when they will move in at Amalienborg and she replied: "We will move later this year. - Hopefully".
Ken Richter (****) explains that the huge success in people wishing to see the palais has been wearing the floors, so they need a make over and they still have to furnish their new homes as practically all furniture they have at present in Kancellihuset will remain there as they plan to spend the summers at Fredensborg.
(*) There has been some annoyance from the locals in Viborg that M&F haven't used that cerificate yet. But if you live most of the time in Copenhagen then I guess you don't go to Viborg very often. Viborg being located in north central Jutland. You really have to have a purpose for going to that town. Even those of us who live in Eastern Jutland don't go there often. The town is slightly out of the way, so to speak.
(**) I understand that a contact family is not common practise.
(***) This success story in regards to integration is in my opinion very much dependant on the refugees themselves, naturally, but more so because they are integrated into a small community as a village is. Being the
strangers, they have to do more to be integrated and they are surrounded by more people with surplus enough to help them to integrate.
That is in contrast to the major cities, especially if they end up in a ghetto. Also the more countrymen they have nearby the higher the tendency is, very naturally, to mingle with them, rather then being forced into mingling with ethnic Danes.
In a village, if you mingle and integrate with the locals you become part of the tribe. On the other hand if you don't mingle, you are out and it can be very lonely in a village!
That doesn't apply just to foreigners mind you, but to all outsiders. We live ourselves in a large village not that far from where Mrs. Muhler grew up. That means that among many locals who know her, I'm first and foremost known as Mrs. Muhler's husband and that will most likely be the case for the next 20-30 years.
So some locals wanted to have a closer look at me to see who it was she had dragged home with her before I was fully accepted.
(****) Ken Richter is a reporter in the sense that he doesn't speculate much, so his articles are pretty reliable.