Another festival for refugees in Manchester.
Journeys Festival International celebrates the extraordinary creativity, culture and experiences that refugees bring to the UK. Managed by ArtReach and established in Leicester in 2013, the festival will be developing strands of work in Manchester this October, with a view to hosting full festivals in 2017 and beyond. Working across a wide range of creative media and disciplines, Journeys Festival International aims to bring the exceptional talent of local, national and international refugee artists into the public eye.
Strands of work that will be brought to Manchester in 2016 (and beyond) include:
· Look Up – a visual exhibition uniting the public realm with art in iconic cityscape locations. If you are an artist, there is scope to develop work for the 2017 exhibition or beyond.
· The Container Project – presenting installations, visual arts and pop-up performances based in and around a shipping container, symbolic of export and transference of place. There will be opportunities to display work, perform and engage with the activities going on in this space.
· Coffee Shop Conversations – an opportunity for the public to discuss and exchange views with refugees and refugee artists over the domestic ritual of coffee and cake. There will be opportunities to participate in these sessions as speakers and chair persons to lead the discussions.
· Manchester Museum – Journeys Festival International Take Over – on Saturday 8 October Manchester Museum will be taken over by a host of Journeys Festival International activity. There will be exhibitions, performance, activities and storytelling curated by Manchester Museum/Portsmouth University department of Psychological Sciences. There will also be a Coffee Shop Conversation, pop up theatre performances and interactive, digital kite flying.
The open day is your chance to find out more and make links with the festival organisers. Light refreshments will be provided.
To book your place, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or text 07533 568 672.
Sad news for refugees in Greece.
Deportation of refugees from Greece to Turkey begins today under the EU deal. According to this agreement people who apply for asylum in Greece and have their applications refused, will be returned to Turkey. Today 200 migrants from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan were sent back to Turkey.
One reason behind this deal is to stop human trafficking across the Aegean and The Mediterranean and therefore to stop death toll in the most deadliest sea crossings. It has been said that so far this year, the death toll has climbed at an even faster rate than over the same period in 2015. However, following the belated decision by Europe’s leaders in late April to reinstate an effective search and rescue mission, this has for the time being been stemmed.
Those migrants who are attempting this perilous journey to Europe mainly come from Eritrea, Afghanistan, Somalia and Nigeria. But by far the single largest number by nationality is Syrian.
The EU is paying Turkey more than £4 billion over the next three years to contain 2.5 million refugees. However the deal to send people back across the Aegean Sea has been fiercely criticised by rights groups on ethical grounds. The Spectator leading article reiterates that ” the problem, is that Turkey is being offered more than money. The EU, in its desperation, says that within a few months it will offer Turkey’s 77 million citizens the ability to travel to any of its 28 member states without the need for a visa. Worse, it will fast-track Turkey’s application to become a full member of the EU — and turn a blind eye to the human rights abuses of Recep Erdogan’s regime. Not that he wants to join the EU: he just wants to show his domestic audience that can behave how he likes, lock up who he likes, and have the EU eating out of his hand.”
Greater Manchester is taking control of £6 billion of public funding for health and social from April 2016.
This will involve making decisions about some of the most important things in our lives – such as health and social care. It will also mean that transfer of certain powers and responsibilities from national government to all 37 NHS Trusts and Local Authorities in Greater Manchester.
Manchester Refugee Support Network is working across Greater Manchester to ensure that refugee voices are heard. They want to help build a collective understanding of what hinders or helps refugees and people seeking asylum from taking charge of their health and well being and making healthy choices, so they need your thoughts and experiences.
This event happening tomorrow Saturday 19th March, 11 am – 3 pm At: St James Church, Princess Road, Moss Side, Manchester, M14 4TH
Refreshments and travel expenses will be provided.
People from all parts of Gtr Manchester are strongly encouraged to attend this event.
For further details contact Belay Kahsay on 01618680777
You could go online and answer a few questions about your health;
Today I read a story beautifully written on Syrian refugees by Booker prize winner Richard Flanagan in Guardian. He visits Lebanon, Greece and Serbia to report on the plight of the 5 million Syrians fleeing their country. The story tells how families had to pack and flee their home after ISIS had appeared from nowhere; inexplicable situations which the pen is incapable of describing.
He asked children to draw their homes in Syria and every single of them used dark colours , blue and black. One of them said ” there were no colour left after Daesh came”.
The story ends very touching ; ”Refugees are not like you and me. They are you and me. That terrible river of the wretched and the damned flowing through Europe is my family.”
Read this unique story here;
He has also made a short film in which he shows the pictures of refugee camps in Lebanon. You can watch the video here.