Update: 26.06.2012

New African Popular University in Geneva

The new African Popular University (UPAF) was inaugurated in Geneva on 20 February 2009. It is the first education centre of its kind in both Switzerland and Europe. The University's objectives are education and integration for the approximately 20 000 Africans living in the Geneva areas (all statutes included). It aims to teach young Africans born in Switzerland about African history and culture while offering legal advice and support for new immigrants to better adjust to Swiss life.

According to University director Kanyana Mutombo, the centre should also be a meeting place for African communities and other communities, Swiss included. The UPAF is financed by the canton, communes and the federal authorities. The president of the University, a retired international worker, said to a local newspaper that the African community had experienced serious changes. With the arrival of a second generation, new questions of identity have arisen. The whole challenge, he said, is how to positively assume these multiple identities.

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