For refugees

Welcome to Welkom in Utrecht

Welkom in Utrecht (Welcome to Utrecht) enables citizens and organisations in Utrecht, wishing to organize an activity for asylum migrants, to make this happen. When it comes to these activities, you may think about sports, children's activities, concert visits, eating together or just a meeting.
How could you participate or just learn more about what we are doing? You can meet the team of Welkom in Utrecht every Thursday morning in the AZC, Joseph Haydnlaan. We provide information about the activities. You can also register there for an activity.
You can check out the  agenda on this website. Or drop by at our office at Joseph Haydnlaan 2A (near the refugees centre – the azc).

You're welcome!



More information for AZC residents: Do you live in AZC Joseph Haydnlaan? You will see us there every Thursday morning between 11:30 AM and 13:30 AM at the notification requirement. We provide information there about activities you can do. And you can register for it. A number of activities are in our agenda. You can also find us in our office next to the AZC. That is in the attic of Plan Einstein, Joseph Haydnlaan 2A.

More information for status holders living in Utrecht: Check our agenda for activities you can participate in. You can also send an email to or an app to one of the employees.

Learning Dutch

WelnU Taalcafé

Do you want to practice speaking, writing or reading the Dutch language? Then come and visit WelnU Taalcafé. Everyone is welcome: from the illiterate to those who already speak Dutch fairly well - and everyone in between. You will receive lessons from a volunteer in small groups.

Check the agenda when and where WelnU Taalcafé is.

Other organizations
There are more opportunities for language lessons by volunteers. Do you want to know more about this? Mail to Hellen from Welkom in Utrecht:

Buddy families

Do you live with your family in Utrecht city and do you want to meet new people? Maybe Welkom Thuis (Welcome Home) is something for you and your family. Welkom Thuis is a project in which a Utrecht family is linked to a family that is new to Utrecht. Participants can, for example, drink coffee or eat together, go to the petting zoo or play games. In this way you get to know each other and have a good time. You can also practice your Dutch and you will get to know Utrecht and Dutch society better. You may make new friends with whom you can talk about parenting, work, what is going well and what is not going well. Welkom in Utrecht brings buddy families into contact with each other and we can help if there are any questions. Do you want to participate or receive more information? Please contact Rebecca: or 06 516 914 78


A buddy is someone - mostly of Dutch origin - that would like to help you with things as a friend. Talking Dutch for example. Or going to the cinema. There are several buddyprojects in Utrecht. Take a look at the following.

Buddy to buddy
Stichting Buddy to Buddy links refugees to the residents of Utrecht. In this project, buddies help refugees to get to know the society. On the other hand, of course Utrechters also learn from the refugees. Besides matching buddies, Buddy to Buddy organizes activities with the participants, with the focus on meeting each other, for example by eating together. A buddy trajectory lasts 4 months.

Click here for more information about Buddy to buddy or check their Facebook page. You can sign up here or y sending an email to

Marhaban project
Are you between 18 and 23 years old and do you speak a bit English or Dutch? Then join the Marhaban project: doing activities together with students from University College Utrecht: playing sports together, visiting a museum, a theater play, a concert, a movie or just drinking a beer or Coke, it’ s all possible with this buddy project.

Once a month, you do an activity with the whole group. This group consists of 10 students and 10 refugees. Then you are going to do activities at least once a week with a student.

Want to join or learn more? Send a whatsapp to Hellen of Welcome to Utrecht: 06 511 923 16
More information about University College Utrecht can be found here.

Visit the facebookpage of the project.

Buddy project for LGBT refugees
Are you LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) and do you want to meet other LGBT?
Cocktail is a project for LGBT refugees in the Utrecht region. They organise buddy contacts between LGBT refugees and volunteers. Once a month, they spend a Saturday evening with the whole group – to have dinner together, chat, dance and enjoy gezelligheid. If you are not looking for a buddy, no problem, you can also just join their activities.

This is what members of Cocktail say about the project:
“At Cocktail I found really good friends.”
“Cocktail made me feel safe and in peace!”
“Cocktail is my second family.”

Want to join Cocktail or learn more about the project? Send a WhatsApp to Hellen from Welcome to Utrecht (06 511 923 16) or contact Cocktail directly via


You can undertake activities with the U-pass. For example, you can become a member of a sports club, go to the gym, buy cheap bus tickets or go on a day trip to an amusement park. You can pay with the money that is on your U-pass. Children between 4 and 18 years old receive extra money to buy a bicycle. A U-pass is for all residents of Utrecht who do not earn that much. Because it is difficult for azc residents to show how much they earn, we have made an agreement with the U-pass agency that all azc residents receive a U-pass if they apply for it through us. Marc and René help you applying on Tuesday afternoon from 1 pm to 2 pm in the Information desk. On Thursday from 11.30 a.m. to 1.30 p.m. Marc can help during the stamping.

Help with moving out

To those refugees who got new houses and are ready to move out in the near future, first of all, congratulations!

Moving out can be a huge job. Do you have problems with language? Do you have problems with choosing the right home appliances? Do you have problems with transportation? Do you need a local citizen to help with these issues? We have an initiative called ‘Verhuisgroep', where local Dutch citizens volunteer to help newcomers with the move-in process.

These local Dutch citizens can help you speak with second hand shopkeepers and choose the right home appliances. Also, some volunteers may have used stuff to donate. If possible, they will give you a ride to the secondhand shops to make sure that you purchase the correct appliances. In addition, volunteers can help with delivering stuff to your house.

Concerned local citizens are willing to donate their time and resources in order to welcome the newcomers in the city. Please kindly inform us at least two weeks before your move-out date, so we can find a volunteer to help you.

If you need help, don't hesitate to let us know by apping Eline at: 06 51698363


You can find a (language) buddy via Welkom in Utrecht. A (language)buddy is a Dutch-speaking volunteer who helps you to practice Dutch. A (language) buddy is not a Dutch teacher. He or she cannot explain grammar to you. But you can practice with a (language) buddy to learn to speak Dutch better. A (language) buddy of Welkom in Utrecht is there for you to learn more than just the Dutch language. It is also someone who wants to do nice things with you; eating together, cooking together or walking for example. Or show you around Utrecht.

(App) buddy. During the Corona crisis it is not always possible to see each other live. You can get an (app)buddy via Welcome to Utrecht. This means that you can practice Dutch with a Dutch person through WhatsApp. For this you must already be able to write a little Dutch or English. Before we start pairing you with a (language)buddy or (app)buddy, we would like to get to know you first.

Do you want to know more? Send an app to Hellen: 06 511 923 16





Places to meet in Utrecht city

De Voorkamer is a meeting space for and by AZC residents, status holders and local residents. You can participate in workshops, there is a language café, there are evenings with music and storytelling. Address: Kanaalstraat 225.

Cocktail Are you a refugee and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or otherwise not heterosexual? In other words LGBT + or Rainbow? Then the Cocktail project might be something for you. Every month Cocktail organizes an activity on a Saturday evening. Usually people eat, talk, dance together - just fun. Do you want to go there or do you want more information? Mail to

Dominicus's living room is a meeting point in the Catholic church in Oog in Al district for local residents and AZC residents. Every week there is a walk-in morning on Tuesdays from 10:00 to 12:00. Coffee is available in the Dominic's dining room. You can tell your story, play a game, get Dutch lessons and help out a bit. Location: Refter (dining room) Dominicuskerk, Palestrinastraat 1. More information? Please contact Hermen van Dorp: 06 122 406 00 or

Voluntary work

Many people in the Netherlands do voluntary work. That is very normal here. It is a good way to meet people, see how the Netherlands works, stay active and gain experience. By doing voluntary work you also do something for Dutch society. You can do volunteer work at many different organizations in Utrecht. Often it involves one or a few days per week. It can also involve voluntary work for a longer period. Do you want more information or do you want to become a volunteer? Please contact Marc via