How do we imagine a fairer, kinder post-COVID world for refugees and asylum seekers?
It’s Refugee Week! To celebrate, we bring you an episode which cuts across borders and hands the mic to two refugee activists who discuss the impact COVID-19 has had on the communities they work with.
We hear from Obai Kurdali who works on peacebuilding and is based in Gaziantep in Turkey, and Loraine Mponela the Chairperson for Coventry Asylum and Refugee Action Group in the UK. Speaking with Shahd Mousalli, Obai and Loraine discuss life as an asylum seeker and refugee in the UK and Turkey, feelings of anxiety and fear amongst refugees which have been exacerbated during the pandemic, INGOs role in the war economy and how a fairer world could be imagined for refugees and asylum seekers post-COVID.
More about our speakers:
Obai Kurdali is a Syrian activist based in Gaziantep Turkey since 2015. Obai has started working in the field of building peace bridges since 2013. He joined the Peace Ambassadors Team of Mobaderoon association and co-founded the Non-violent behaviours initiative, which supports youth in developing Non-violent mechanisms. Currently, Obai is leading the network of My Home Is Your Home, which seeks to maintain and enhance solidarity and synergy among different refugee communities during COVID19.
Loraine Mponela is from Malawi and has lived in the UK for 12 years. She is the current Chairperson for Coventry Asylum and Refugee Action Group (CARAG). Lorraine’s educational background is in Public Health and she co-founded Malawi Public Health Forum (MPHF), a platform that seeks to engage politicians and advocate for people’s rights in relation to health.
Links and resources
Read Loraine’s recent article>> The Impact of COVID-19 Government Measures on Asylum Seekers
Check out >> My Home is your Home Facebook network
Coventry Asylum and Refugee Action Group (CARAG)
Join the (hashtag) StatusNow Campaign and sign the petition to put pressure on the government to give leave to remain to undocumented migrants and asylum seekers that have been failed by the system.