Introduction / History Indians who are more financially well off come to Switzerland when they travel to Europe as "Bollywood" has made films here. Immigrants also have come to Switzerland from South Asia and it has one of the largest percentages of Indians and Pakistanis in Europe. The number of Tamils is yet larger.
The first to come to Switzerland were students and people wanting self-government in their countries. Most of the South Asians range from the 20 to about 40 years old. There is an increase in children below fourteen years old. The largest community is from Sri Lanka who are mainly Tamil Hindus.
The first group of Tamils came to Switzerland from 1983 to 1989 as the Sri Lankan civil war began. They have permanent residence and are not depending on state benefits any more. The larger group that came secondly, after 1989, have not been able to integrate as well financially as the first group and they do not have permanent residence.
It is said there are a few reasons that have caused Switzerland to be a main country for Tamils. Tamils have been known to migrate through the years. There were Tamil students in Europe who helped the new immigrants. Larger migration began with families paying travelling expenses for their oldest sons. When they got work in Switzerland they earned a lot more than in Sri Lanka and so helped their families too. Transnational networks began, used by families and friends later. Sri Lankan and European based agents helped them also. Switzerland offered them work permits and social help and this encouraged more migration to the country. Since then Switzerland is trying to have less Tamils.
Prayer Points * Pray that the uncertainty of permanent residence could bring Tamils to look for God and to bring them to Jesus Christ.