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Hosting refugees as language interns in Oslo

Employer Network

Hosting refugee interns


What’s the problem?

As in most European countries, Norway has seen a recent increase in the number of refugees seeking and receiving asylum in the country. Helping newcomers integrate into the local society comes with many challenges, one of which is their limited access to the workforce, even in places like Oslo with its very low unemployment rates and generally ample job opportunities.


What’s the solution?

The solution is a network of individuals working in different organisations who are willing to host a refugee as a language intern in their organization. One member of the network will have experience in hosting refugee interns. This coordinator will host monthly meetings, be available for questions between meetings, and facilitate contact with the Social Welfare Administration.



  • Network of organisations
  • Mentoring service



  • Integration
  • Education
  • Work and employment
  • Language training
  • Cultural exchange



  • Employers (public and private sector)
  • Social Welfare Administration (NAV)
  • Refugees



  • Get more employers to host refugees as language interns in their organisations
  • Reduce the risk experienced by employers when they accept refugees as interns in their organisations by guiding them through the process
  • Create a safe environment for employers and refugees to learn
  • Accelerate Norwegian learning and social inclusion for refugees
  • The long term objective is that more employers consider refugees as possible employees


How is the solution innovative within the local context?

The solution is innovative because it takes the perspective of the employer, and takes the employer’s concerns and perceived risks seriously. Furthermore, it is a private sector initiative where employers support each other, without a large role for public institutions, NGOs, or other actors who may not understand the employer’s dilemmas and motivations or have the capacity to support such initiatives.



Employers can apply for funding from the Social Welfare Administration to cover the costs associated with hosting the intern, including mentoring and training hours. This funding is granted to all who apply, as long as they meet eligibility criteria.


Stage of development

  • Informal network established with coordinating employer
  • Pilot project started


This innovation was developed during a co-creation process facilitated by SoCentral and supported by the Social Innovation Community.