When we hear stories about refugees in our news feeds, we often hear only the statistics and fail to see the individuals behind the label “refugee”. This can lead to fear and misunderstanding. Join us to explore how connecting to people through their stories can help us bring more compassion and love to our societies and communities.
This event is hosted and led by Anahita Mahmoudi, an Associate Fellow. Associate Fellows are emerging leaders and alumni of St Ethelburga’s programmes, whose work we support. Associate Fellow events share our values and are aligned with St Ethelburga’s mission. Associate Fellows have their own distinct facilitation styles, language and methodology. We value these events as a way of giving a platform for emerging leaders and for the diversity they bring to our programme.
The world around us is suffering; climate catastrophe, countries breaking down, social and racial discrimination, refugee crises and desecration of our common home. When we hear stories about refugees, we often hear only the statistics and fail to see the individuals behind the label “refugee”. This can lead to fear and misunderstanding, but I believe humanity needs our attention and compassion, and for us to live in harmony with each other. Connecting to people through their stories can help us to bring more empathy and love to our societies and communities.
This evening’s event is an invitation to reveal the truth and share stories about refugees and explore what values can strengthen our resilience to bear the truth of our times.
During this session we will read a couple of stories from best-selling book ‘Let me tell you my story: stories of hope, courage and humanity’ which contains photographs, poetry and art of, and by, refugees. The book was produced by Their Story is Our Story, a US based, non-profit organisation that gathers and shares first-hand stories to reveal the individual behind the ‘refugee’ label. These stories aim to cultivate meaningful relationships with those seeking refuge locally so that, together, we can help build strong and inclusive communities worldwide. We will explore how to bear these difficult stories of our time and discuss what values might strengthen our resilience to accept the truth and courage to take an action.
Host: Anahita Mahmoudi is an Associate Fellow of St. Ethelburga’s Centre for Reconciliation and Peace. Anahita’s heart is truly in humanitarian work and she has in-depth experience of refugee aid work from within the heart of the refugee crisis in Europe from 2015 to present. Anahita’s recent guest blog for St Ethelburga’s, Resilience and solidarity: in search of an answer can be read here.
This event has been organised in collaboration with Refugee Allies.
Co-Host: Jo Winsloe Slater is Programme Manager of Refugee Allies at St Ethelburga’s. Refugee Allies aims to raise awareness of the plight, courage and creativity of displaced people and build relationships between newcomers and locals in order to ease tensions in communities in London. We collaborate with individuals and organisations to host public events and coordinate workshops and programmes that cultivate allyship and stimulate action. The project grew out of the staff team’s life-changing experience of volunteering on the Greek island of Lesvos at the height of Europe’s so-named refugee crisis of 2015.
Photo credit: Tim Mossholder @ Unsplash
St Ethelburga’s is a ‘maker of peace-makers’. We inspire and equip individuals and communities to contribute, in their own particular contexts, to activating a global culture of peace.