The state of Rheinland-Pfalz provides one-stop website for American families

by Atlantic Academy Rheinland-Pfalz

The state of Rheinland-Pfalz provides a one-stop website for American families
It’s that time of the year: The PCS season is in full swing and many service members are taking the leap over the pond with their families and have to adapt to the unfamiliar circumstances in Germany. The big challenge is to adjust to the various everyday-life issues they encounter during their stay: The cultural differences, different do’s and don’ts in social interactions, host nation regulations, the language barrier, and much more. Inevitably, a great number of questions will arise at once that need to be addressed in order to settle in the area quickly:

What is the cultural mindset? How can I connect with locals? When is the next event in my community? Where can I play sports and are there local clubs I can join? What recreational activities can I engage in?

To prosper as members of the community, it is essential for newly arrived U.S. families to receive the right answers to the emerging questions. Being aware of German customs, local businesses, clubs, and events can accelerate this adjustment process after a PCS.
Up until now, service members searching for information about their village on the internet had to visit many different platforms to gather the much-needed content. Especially for American families living in small villages, third party listings, brochures, and social media groups had been the only sources to get to know about the local offerings available to them.

To improve the lengthy information process, the project “Welcome to Rheinland-Pfalz! Our Neighbors from the USA” initiated by the Ministry of Interior Rheinland-Pfalz and coordinated by the Atlantic Academy have launched a website which provides insight into the opportunities to partake in the communal life, making this integrative state program the only one of its kind in the world.
According to the Minister of the Interior of Rheinland-Pfalz, Roger Lewentz, the project “Welcome to Rheinland-Pfalz! Our Neighbors from the USA” aims at building transatlantic bridges locally.

“We want to enhance the opportunities for American families to join in the life of their German community. Living together in an open and welcoming atmosphere is of mutual benefit for both Germans and Americans alike. With the project and its services we want to support the communities and its citizens in their already strong commitment to acting as good hosts even further,” Lewentz said.

To most of the 11 project communities close to the military bases in Ramstein, Baumholder, and Spangdahlem, the website represents a novel approach to providing information in English in a modern fashion to a large number of Americans living in the community. The Project Manager John Constance also points out the exceptional essence of the provided information.

“What makes the new website unique is the fact that the extensive local information has been compiled by local representatives and their project teams themselves. They are the ones who know their village inside out and they are more than willing to show their fellow American citizens how they can become an active member of their community,” said Constance. “It’s a clear sign of American families being welcome to participate in the local life which cannot be stressed enough.”

The website lists services like shops, restaurants, craftsmen, and doctors but also leisure-time possibilities, exciting events, clubs, schools, kindergartens, and guidance on the German recycling system and waste management in the 11 project communities. Furthermore, the platform features a comprehensive guide to help service members with the transition and promote the integration into the area, adding to their quality of life. While currently 11 villages are actively involved in the project, the long-range objective is to expand the services and support further villages willing to display the local opportunities to American families living in the community.

The provision of all this information is designed to facilitate German-American encounters and improve the local interaction, leading to a more active, secure, and attentive German-American neighborhood. After all, the State of Rheinland-Pfalz, the project communities and the local population want to make it easier for their American neighbors to explore, embrace and enjoy their new home here in Rheinland-Pfalz.
Visit the new one-stop project website at