by admin | Apr 12, 2019
Through her research and as a grassroots refugee support network, Anneke realised that few asylum seekers or refugees have any British friends or offers of friendship and most are very alone. She also realised that there were many ordinary people, like her, who want to help and offer friendship, but don’t know how.
Through HostNation Anneke hopes to make it easier for others to have the same rewarding experience that she has had through befriending asylum seekers, and to provide a simple mechanism for bringing citizens and refugees together in local communities through small acts of kindness, hospitality and companionship.
Usman is a refugee from Pakistan who has lived in London for the last 12 years. He has always had a passion for good quality coffee and always dreamed of having a coffee business of his own someday. Over the years, his experiences of hardships from applying for asylum, fighting for his case and then facing challenges as a refugee, added to and shaped up that dream of his.
HAVEN Coffee is the result of that dream. Usman spent the last year working with an organisation called TERN to make the dream a reality. In the future he is aiming to combine this love for coffee with support for refugees, by promoting artists with a refugee background working in the visual arts and performing arts, organising local events and providing paid barista training.
Zac is originally from South Carolina, USA and is currently a film student studying at the University of Westminster in Harrow. He is finishing his last year of studies and has developed his skills in both filmmaking and photography over the past few years with projects and courses based in the United States, England, and New Zealand.
Abdul is a refugee from Aleppo, Syria. Two years into the uprising, he left the country for good and made his way to the UK. Using comedy, he sheds light on issues related to refugees and integration. He is currently an EAP Teaching Fellow at UCL and a visiting lecturer at UAL.
Olivia has been on the Bread and Roses team since 2016 as the lead florist and as part of her role, she designs and facilitates the workshops with participants which often include refugees. She also coordinates floral commercial activity and fundraising.
Olivia has a strictly seasonal and sustainable flower studio. She only works with locally grown flowers either from her flower fields just outside London or supporting other small market farms. She doesn’t use floral foam or single use plastics, she is passionate about ethical sourcing and being as environmentally friendly as possible.
Ruth started working at Derby Refugee Advice Centre in January 2017 after 14 years of working in the Conservation Sector, coordinating community projects and raising awareness for endangered species. While the two areas seem poles apart, her previous experience of managing volunteers and projects and organising trips, activities and workshops has been invaluable in helping Refugees and Asylum Seekers settle and integrate into Derby and the UK.
Derby Refugee Forum which runs the Advice Centre is a registered charity that offers support and signposting for those seeking sanctuary in the UK and Derby. The Centre is very busy, offering drop-in advice sessions, along with a variety of workshops, activities and trips.
Janet started to volunteer at Derby Refugee Advice Centre almost 6 years ago and has been project manager since October 2016. She has previously been involved with asylum seekers and refugees whilst running Access to Higher Education programmes at a local college where she realised what a valuable contribution their skills, commitment, determination and bravery can make to our society.
Derby Refugee Advice Centre helps to enable people to overcome often desperate and traumatic personal circumstances and make the most of their lives.
Sophie is a Product Marketing Manager at Monese, a mobile-only current account. Carrying on the spirit of financial inclusion that Monese began with, Sophie is responsible for helping refugees and asylum seekers in the UK access Monese accounts for free.
In her spare time, Sophie runs ŠITE Productions, a theatre company that specialises in creating unique, on-off productions in secret venues across London. Sophie is British-born but has lived, worked and studied across Europe, the USA, Australia and Japan.
In 2008 Ahmed was shot twice by a member of the Shia opposition during the internal conflict which broke out in Lebanon between the Sunni and Shia Muslims. He was paralysed. 8 years later in 2016, Ahmed encountered a road block manned by the same gunman who had shot him. Following advice from state intelligence services who believed Ahmed was being targeted, Ahmed fled the country leaving behind his fiancée and his job.
Now, despite being paralysed Ahmed is a wheelchair basketball champion and next year he will be representing the UK in the International wheelchair basket-ball championship.
When asked “what has your experience taught you?” He replied “That life has many different stages. One moment you’re up and in the blink of your eye you’re down. But you must never give up. Every stage involves a new version of you. There’s always a light at the end of the tunnel. I believe life gives you the message for a reason, only time shows you the meaning of this message. I feel very grateful for my life.”
Emily is currently studying B.A. Film at The University of Westminster where she has advanced her skills in a range of departments including photography, editing, and production design. She has a range of experience including professionally editing photo stills for properties.
Lucas Jedrzejak’s films have taken him from the Arctic Circle (In Expectation of the Thaw, premiered at the Royal Albert Hall in 2010 in front of Prince Charles) to China (a 7-episode series for Epic TV, 2013) and the USA (Talking Machines, currently in post-production, and The Preacher and the Hitman, 2008, delving into the boxing world).
Lucas’ atmospheric aesthetic, attested by his 2005 Sony Award, can be seen in latest film, Ketermaya, featuring close up the extraordinary resilience of a group of Syrian refugee children. Currently Lucas is working for Sheffield Hallam University as an Associate Lecturer in Film and Media Production.
IMDB: Lucas Jedrzejak
Charles Fernyhough is a writer and psychologist. His non-fiction book about his daughter’s psychological development, The Baby in the Mirror (Granta, 2008), was translated into eight languages. His book on autobiographical memory, Pieces of Light (Profile, 2012) was shortlisted for the 2013 Royal Society Winton Prize for Science Books. His latest non-fiction book is The Voices Within (Profile/Wellcome Collection). He is the author of two novels, The Auctioneer (Fourth Estate, 1999) and A Box Of Birds (Unbound, 2013). He has written for the Guardian, Observer, Financial Times, Literary Review, Sunday Telegraph, Lancet, Los Angeles Times, TIME, Nature and New Scientist, and has made numerous radio and TV appearances in the UK and US, including Start the Week, Woman’s Hour, All in the Mind and Horizon. He is a part-time professor of psychology at Durham University.
KnickerBocker Corey has built a reputation over the last decade bringing his exciting take on Hip Hop, Funk, Reggae and Electronic Bass music all across the UK. He started off being inspired to take the approach of going back and wiping the dust of those classic tracks you once loved. He makes the most of every opportunity to blend the gold with the oldies while connecting you with the freshest music you may not have yet heard.
He has appeared at festivals and clubbing resorts such as Shambala, Mostly Jazz, Ibiza Rocks and Soundwave. In addition to this, he has held residencies and appeared at iconic club nights held by Red Bull, Gatecrasher & Urban Nerds. This has led to being booked as the opening act for global renowned DJs such as Grandmaster Flash, DJ Yoda, Jaguar Skills, DJ A-Trak, Diplo and many more.
He currently hosts a bi-monthly an all vinyl party known as ‘CULT JAM’ in London which is growing into a popular destination for people that want music with a groove.
Corey brings a wealth of talent and experience to the SonaTalks team.
Mixcloud: KnickerbockercoreyTwitter: @knickerbockerdjInstagram: @knickerbockercoreyFacebook: cultjamparties
Dee Nyoni strikes the drum for soul served with grit. Her songs pay tribute to retro grooves with modern funky urban breaks mixed down with sassy background vocals. Her live delivery is fearless and has wowed audiences from Philidelphia’s North By Northwest, New York City’s Apollo Theatre, 5 Spot Soul Food and Sounds Of Brazil to London’s Ronnie Scott’s and The Jazz Cafe.
Dee has featured as the only guest vocalist on Rock and Roll Hall of Fame legend, Sam Moore’s “He Won’t Let You Go” and is a well respected singer and vocal arranger in the Music Industry.
Akram is one of the most celebrated dance artists today, building his reputation on the success of imaginative, highly accessible and profoundly moving productions such as Until the Lions, Kaash, iTMOi (in the mind of igor), DESH, Vertical Road, Gnosis and zero degrees.
As an instinctive and natural collaborator, Khan has been a magnet to world-class artists from cultures and disciplines such as the National Ballet of China, actress Juliette Binoche, ballerina Sylvie Guillem, choreographers/dancers Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and Israel Galván, singer Kylie Minogue, visual artists Anish Kapoor, Antony Gormley and Tim Yip, and composers Steve Reich, Nitin Sawhney, Jocelyn Pook and Ben Frost.
Rushanara Ali is the Labour member of Parliament for Bethnal Green and Bow. Rushanara grew up in her constituency attending Mulberry school and Tower Hamlets College. She was the first in her family to go to university and studied Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Oxford University. Until her resignation from Labour’s front bench in September 2014 over her decision to abstain on the vote on airstrikes in Iraq, Rushanara served as Shadow Minister for Education and Young People, and between October 2010 and October 2013, as Shadow Minister for International Development.
Rushanara also co-founded the Social Innovation Exchange social which works to connect innovators and social entrepreneurs around the world to collaborate to tackle major social problems. In April 2016 Rushanara was appointed as the Prime Minster’s Trade Envoy to Bangladesh. This cross-party programme established in 2012 aims to build business and bilateral trade relationships and help drive economic growth in developing countries. She also visited Cox’s Bazaar in Bangladesh, the largest Refugee Camp in the world, and has called on the UK Government to do more in their response to refugees.
Erik joined The Money Charity in September 2017 and looks after its workplace and community programmes and is the acting Chief Executive
Erik has experience working within operations, governance, and debt collections in global retail banks. Originally from the US, Erik has lived in Germany, UAE, Russia and now the UK; he has had the opportunity to work in over 40 countries during his career. He has also workedwith charities including Citizen’s Advice and SouthwarkFoodbank. In addition to his work, Erik is a trustee for Fair Money Advice, an East London debt advice charity.
Erik enjoys helping organisations understand how financial capability can improve their products and services while also supporting the wellbeing of their employees. The Money Charity has been working in partnership with the UK Refugee Council over the last 12 months, delivering financial education and services to the UK’s refugee community.
Jess is the Operations Coordinator of The Bike Project, a charity that donates bikes to refugees. She manages bike donations in London from procurement of bikes to the weekly donation sessions. Her role also involves increasing revenue for The Bike Project through their social enterprise and by supporting community fundraisers.
In 2017, Jess spent 5 months in Greece volunteering on Chios Island, a refugee hot spot, and in Athens. She supported numerous projects such as distribution of aid including food and clothes, helping run the Chios Creative Centre, supporting unaccompanied minors and hosting activities on celebrations such as Eid.
Bruce Tang is a comedy improviser and stand-up with a love of wordplay and whimsical darkness. Bruce explores what it means to be normal and the failures that come from its pursuit. You can find Bruce the Hoopla Impro Theatre where he regularly performs with his team Special Delivery.
Johnnie has over a decade of experience operating across a broad spectrum of complex population groups; managing award- winning programmes within the community, sports development and sport for social change sectors. Johnnie’s current role sees him manage Everton in the Community’s (official charity of Everton Football Club) multi award-winning health and wellbeing department and its mental health football programmes.
In this role Johnnie has pioneered a number of ground- breaking projects including the ‘Imagine Your Goals’ football therapy project which was successfully rolled out to 15 other Premier League clubs across the UK and won the 2017 Beyond Sport global health and wellbeing award. Other projects include collaborative work with the Red Cross Society to support the refugee crisis in the West Nile region of Uganda with mental health support and intervention training through sport.
Jerome is currently a student at Roehampton University studying for a degree in Filmmaking. His filmmaking experience includes video research and editing for Academy Films and videography work for Stay Spoken. Jerome is an outgoing, energetic and enthusiastic individual with an impressive portfolio of work to his name.
Ake is a former child labourer from the Ivory Coast. He was one of the first victims of the Right to Work checks in 2009. At the time, the situation he experienced in his native Ivory Coast had no name, today it is called a hostile environment. Ake struggled to find support in getting the right to work in the UK. This led Ake to set up Right2WorkUK Ltd to protect the labour rights and empower others who are going through a similar situation.
Ake arrived in the UK in 2006 with little knowledge of the English language. He now holds a Bsc in International Relations, a Master’s degree in International Human Rights Law and he is set to start a PhD in Labour Migration Law.
Nominated Chortles ‘Best Newcomer’ 2018, Somali-born, Cardiff-raised and London Based, Mo Omar is a fast-rising talent with a unique perspective.
From being crowned Leicester Square New Comedian Of the Year 2017 competition his rise has been nothing short of meteoric not only performing nationally but even internationally for the British Forces abroad in Bahrain, Romania, and even his native Somalia. Mo also writes and makes short-form videos for the new BBC Wales platform BBC Sesh.
Using his background in law, Vy-liam has worked in various law firms specialising in immigration and human rights. He has found his way into the higher education sector, working with international students at Kings College London, University of Bath, Birmingham City University and is currently at Aston University. Aside from this, Vy-liam has also helped found the Kvell Project which looks to support refugee children living on the Thai-Burma border.
Being passionate about education and human rights, Vy-liam is also pursuing his PhD part-time at the University of Bristol and exploring the connection between statelessness and genocide.
Hamed who is originally from Afghanistan, founded Orient Experience and Africa Experience, two restaurants based on the culinary travel experience of migrants from the Middle East and Africa. Early in his life, Hamed developed a passion for cinema, which took him to Italy for the first time in 2006 where he was invited to the Venice Film Festival. Many extremist in Afghanistan did not approve the film he had produced, and Hamed was forced to seek political asylum in Italy, where he worked a variety of jobs until he became a Cultural and Linguistic Mediator.
In 2012, Hamed bought a Deli in the centre of Venice, which became the Orient Experience. Thanks to the success of this first initiative, he opened the second takeaway and a third restaurant in Campo Santa Margherita. Finally, Hamed opened a fourth restaurant: Africa Experience, with a new menu, inspired by the journey of African migrants. Today, the enterprise is led by 15 partners from different countries, cultures and languages; hiring 35 employees and 10 interns.
Originally from Poland, Hanna is currently studying for her BA in Film at the University of Westminster, Harrow. She has developed her photography and filmmaking skills over the last three years at filmmaking courses in Wajda School, Warsaw and Prague Film School, Prague.
Damilola is currently studying for a Masters in International and Development Economics at the Hochschule Fur Technik Und Wirtschaft in Berlin, Germany. Having completed a degree in Economics, Damilola has also completed summer programmes at the Institute for International Law of Peace and Armed Conflict at Ruhr-Universitat Bochum and Humanitarian Response to Conflict and Disaster at Harvard University.
Born and raised in Syria, Nour moved to the UK to do his MA in Marketing at Durham University in 2009. Being Syrian with a home country at war, Nour applied to become a refugee in 2014. Having worked in the hospitality industry at the Sheraton and Intercontinental Hotel Group, Nour moved into the tech industry and in 2015 he launched Wizme as a marketplace for corporates to automate small meetings’ bookings.
After being homeless, drowning in debt and being completely on his own, Nour hustled to build a prototype which helped him secure £130k in investment and establish an industry advisory board. Named as one to watch by Buying Business Travel and ranked among the Top 5 new Start Ups at the Disrupt Awards, Nour plans to launch Wizme v.2.0 in Q2 2019.
Dina Nayeri was born in Iran during the revolution and arrived in America when she was ten years old. She is the winner of a National Endowment for the Arts Grant, an O. Henry Award and the UNESCO City of Literature Paul Engle Prize. The author of two novels and contributor to ‘The Displaced’, her work has been published in over twenty countries. Her stories and essays have been published in ‘Best American Short Stories’ and by the New York Times, Guardian, Wall Street Journal and Granta. She lives in London.
Ali is currently a student at Roehampton University studying for a degree in Photography and Film. His filmmaking experience include making observational documentaries, a BBC interview with the Ukraine foreign Minister and theatre productions in Camden, London. Ali is personally familiar with the plight of refugees and is passionate about the SonaTalks cause.
Irina also came to Britain with poor English and without a specific career plan. A chance encounter led to full-time employment, a Bachelor of Science in Career Guidance and a degree in Culture & Arts.
Now it seems her career, though not planned, has come full circle. Today she works with Groundwork Elevate, which offers free specialist advice to refugees preparing to work in the UK and also supports businesses to employ refugees.
Though she has lived in the UK for over 20 years she is not confused about her identity: “I am Russian and I embrace British values. I like the tolerance of the society. I like the opportunities – you can do virtually anything here. If you work hard you can be really successful. UK is my home now.”
Archi is in charge of design and marketing at SonaTalks. A talented designer, Archi has held senior positions at Apple, Thomson Reuters, Experian and Informa. He holds a Bachelors of Arts in Music and a Masters in Interactive Multimedia.
Michael focuses on strategic business development at SonaTalks where he brings expertise within social enterprise, international strategy, education and employability. He is a frequent global traveller and has contributed to international publications including the Financial Times and The Sunday Times.
Michael holds an MBA with Distinction from Aston Business School with further business education from Harvard and Copenhagen Business School.
Evie is an Economics Graduate from the University of Manchester and is currently finishing an MSc in International Development Studies from University of Amsterdam. For the past 18 months, Evie has worked in Tanzania and the UK as Educational Coordinator for ‘Future for Iringa Street Children’ where she has helped implement key strategic projects.
Sam is currently studying for an Economics Degree at the University of Exeter. In November 2018, Sam was awarded a scholarship to Mumbai to explore world challenge ‘How do smart cities ensure they are inclusive?’ where he further developed his ability to converse diplomatically about sensitive issues involving a diverse range of viewpoints. He has been awarded a second scholarship to Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China to undertake a period of cultural immersion.
Mo is a Damascus-born, London-bred comedian. Dark yet charmingly satirical material shedding light on politics, culture and arena his own shortcomings in life. Some of his awards and accomplishments include:
BBC New Comedy Award Nominee 2018
Amused Moose Semi-Finalist 2018
So You Think You’re Funny? Semi-finalist 2016
Facebook: Mo Saffaf Comedian
David has over 15 years’ experience working in the IT & E-learning industries covering Sales, Teaching, Customer Service & Project Management. Originally from Dublin, Ireland, David is currently based in Cologne, Germany where he manages development projects in Kenya & Greece. He has a Diploma in Business Management and he is certified in Public Speaking and Social Care.
Prior to gaining admission to University of St Andrews, Atisha led a group of 35 students across India to conduct an on ground research study which is currently being used by think tanks and NGOs in Rajathan to study village policy implementation. Atisha has also written a book on management called ‘How to organize a successful High School Conference’ which is available on Amazon. Atisha has been awarded numerous accolades for her academic, leadership, debating and social services contributions.
Akoi is a Liberian refugee resettled in the UK. In 1989, Akoi’s life changed forever when his home country Liberia was engulfed in a civil war. Fifteen years later, Akoi’s life changed again when he became one of the first refugees to be resettled in Britain through the UN/UK refugees’ resettlement Scheme called Gateway Protection Programme and the Syrian Vulnerable Person Resettlement Scheme. Akoi now works for the UN/UK resettlement programs with the British Refugee Council; helping host communities and international partners to understand and support newly arrived resettled refugees rebuild their lives in safety.
Selin has covered many eye-opening stories about refugees. She especially focuses on seeing the refugee crisis not only as a humanitarian issue but also an economic issue. Selin promotes the idea that refugees can offer tangible economic benefits to their adopted countries if given the right to work and education.
“We have to recognise the skills, talents, and aspirations of refugees and enable host communities to share in those benefits.”
Selin served in Sarajevo for four years as a cultural envoy. She is also a regular contributor to publications such as Rising Powers in Global Governance, TRT World, Hurriyet Daily News and Middle East Monitor. She is one of the founders of the In-Depth News Department of Anadolu News Agency and participated in United Nations COP23 as the observer in Bonn.
Selin holds an MA in Cultural Studies at International University of Sarajevo and an MA in Global Diplomacy from SOAS, University of London.
Jaz O’Hara is the founder of The Worldwide Tribe, an organisation and online community raising awareness about the refugee crisis, as well as supporting those caught up in it.
The Worldwide Tribe began after a Facebook post Jaz wrote about her first trip to the Calais Jungle (in July 2015) went viral. Since then, Jaz has worked tirelessly in camps across Europe and the Middle East to tell the stories that otherwise go unheard.
The Worldwide Tribe has run many projects on the ground, from installing wifi in camps in France and Greece, to organising a football tournament in Dunkirk, funding a fire truck in Calais, running art projects in Za’atari camp in Jordan, supporting a Search and rescue in the Med, coordinating food, clothing, shelter and much more. Jaz and her team are dedicated to challenging the fear-based narrative of much of today’s media and society.
London public transport is undeniably one of the best in the world, albeit at a significant cost. For refugees who sometimes arrive here with just the clothes on their backs, this makes resettling even more difficult. For Jem Stein of the Bike Project, having seen the impact of refurbishing an old bike for a refugee mentee whilst he was at University to be able to access critical services, this simple idea turned into an incredibly impactful business. After distributing more than 4,200 bikes to refugees his organisation has also given cycle training to 230 refugee women and 70 Bike Buddy matches, bringing refugees and their new neighbours together over a shared loved of cycling.
Refugees are expected to live on £36 per week and are banned from working, something which a coalition of businesses led by Refugee Action are campaigning to change (lift the ban), Jem shows that with a little ingenuity and a lot of perseverance, bringing people together towards a common goal doesn’t have to be complicated.
The 2017 TIME person(s) of the year were the “Silence Breakers”; women who spoke up against sexual abuse and harassment, including the figureheads of the ‘Me Too’ movement. The #SetHerFree campaign, spearheaded by ‘Women for Refugee Women’, campaigned for years to change the laws, has shown how grass-roots activism and the power of sisterhood can bring about real change.
Closer to home, we saw a change in the law that would end to the detention of pregnant women, an end to the detention of survivors of sexual and gender-based violence, and an introduction of a 28-day time limit on all immigration detention.
Musician Shingai Shoniwa is a Zimbabwean-British singer, best known as the vocalist and bassist for the UK indie rock band Noisettes. Shingai’s parents were refugees from Zimbabwe. Shingai’s music has always taken inspiration from that experience. As described by Rolling Stone magazine;
”Shingai is a living, breathing manifestation of the rock & roll spirit, with a voice that is equal parts Iggy Pop and Billie Holiday”.
Not one to sit still on injustice, throughout her career Shingai has partnered with the likes of Amnesty International and featured on songs to raise awareness with Annie Lennox, Madonna, Gladys Knight and Celine Dion.
Eid Aljazairli, 24, nearly drowned trying to cross the Mediterranean to reach Europe in 2016. A year later, he has stunned swimming experts by becoming a competitive swimmer in just 12 months and is now training for the 2020 Olympics. Eid did not know how to swim when he fled Damascus and took his chance on a small, barely seaworthy vessel that took him across the Mediterranean. Eid is now clocking 43 seconds for the 50-metre freestyle, and at this rate, his coaches believe he could compete at Tokyo 2020. Swimming takes Eid away from everything and makes him feel untouchable. Eid says, “When you have a hard day and have a lot going on, you just go into the water and enter another world.”
Bio Medical Science graduate, Fatime Gashi knows what it means to maximise your opportunities in life. Having resettled in the UK as a Kosovan refugee, Fatime is the current Miss Manchester 2018/19 and is the first contestant in the history of the competition to get a perfect score from all the judges. She now wants to redefine what it means to be a modern day beauty queen, part of which involves changing people’s perception of refugees.
“Just because you’re in a different country doesn’t stop you doing anything you want. I really want refugees to know they can go far.”
Author. TEDx Speaker. Activist. Son. Brother. Refugee. Gulwali Passarlay knows a little something about titles. Whilst most 13 yrs olds are playing video games or sports, Gulwali was surviving. He arrived in the UK at the age of 13 completely alone after his father and other members of his family had been killed by US forces in Afghanistan.
Since then, Gulwali has spent his time acquiring new titles. Bolton Youth Council member, Children in Care Council member, London 2012 Olympic Torch-bearer, the University of Manchester’s “Most Remarkable Student”, and of course, author of the book ‘The Lightless Sky: An Afghan Refugee Boy’s Journey of Escape to A New Life in Britain’.
Martin is the Director of Breadwinners, a grassroots charity selling organic artisan bread and supporting refugees with the opportunity to gain their first work experience in the UK. Martin is a board member at Social Innovation Exchange, the leading global network of social innovators, and Praxis, an organisation that provides vital support to vulnerable migrants.
He has also led a WASH implementation in rural Nicaragua and is an active volunteer and fundraiser for Refugee Youth. With vast experience in large corporations including GSK and Lindt & Sprungli, Martin has established himself as a continuous improvement expert. Martin who is based in London is currently participating in the School for Social Entrepreneurs Trade up programme, and is a fellow of On Purpose leadership programme.
Five years ago, Lin was almost qualified as a doctor in her native Syria. After her house was bombed in the war she came to the U. K. as a refugee where she began her medical degree from scratch at Sheffield University in a completely new language.
Today, Lin is in the final year of her degree as an honours student. She is an interpreter for the U.N. Refugee Council and the N.H.S. She is a radio presenter, she organises charity events and she has been crowned Miss Yorkshire 2018/19.
Lin knows only too well the challenges being faced by refugees who are forced to start over. In spite of this, she has adapted to and embraced her new community with an inspirational story to share.
Ahmed, a 51 year old refugee from Egypt was one of the beneficiaries of Breadwinners, a grassroots charity selling organic artisan bread and supporting refugees with the opportunity to gain their first work experience in the UK. Having worked in import and export of fruit for over 20 years while he was still living in Egypt, Ahmed utilised the opportunity he got thanks to Breadwinners to build up his work experience, cultural awareness and confidence at the market stalls at Primrose Hill in London.
Ahmed now runs a successful business providing fresh fruits, vegetables and juices as well as catering for Middle Eastern and Egyptian food at social and corporate events throughout London.
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The hottest and also potentially the most disruptive technology that has emerged in recent years is Artificial Intelligence. Will all machines replace us in the workforce? How much agency do we have in creating and utilising the technology in creating and designing jobs in the future? Harry Armstrong of NESTA claims an estimated 47% of jobs may be automated out of the market, something not seen since the Industrial revolution. He offers key insights into what this will mean for us going forward.
In addition to the largest displacement of people in the last 70 years, this has massive implications for society, and asks some fundamental questions about the role of ‘work’ personally and in society.
Twitter: Harry Armstrong
What does it mean to be “British”? Dual heritage Connie Constance’s patriotically named album, English Rose, explores this against a backdrop of rising racial and political tensions, laying bare ideas and questions that make us question “who are we?”
As part of the process for British citizenship or settlement in the UK, there is a test undertaken by all applicants called Life in the UK. In a time where culturally, the UK is divided, this is increasingly difficult to define.
Instagram: Connie Constance
2018 saw Alexia Pepper De Caires, a whistle-blower and former Save the Children employee make headlines for confronting Penny Mordaunt, the UK’s International development secretary, as she announced the creation of a computer database, to store the names of sexual predators working in the Aid sector at the International Safeguarding Summit.
Pepper De Caires’ NGO, Safe Space, has advocated for stronger measures than the government’s database, and has called for “feminist leadership” in the aid sector, overhauling the status quo, bringing real change to what appears to be a systemic issue within the sector.
website:NGO Safe Space
Twitter: Alexia Pepper De Caires
Jameela Jamil, former BBC Radio 1 DJ, actor and writer, is fighting back against the idea of the perfect body. ‘I Weigh’ movement is for women to feel “valuable and see how amazing they are beyond the flesh on our bones”.
With the Advertising Standards Authority cracking down on Social Media Influencers and how they promote their sponsors, Londoner Jameela poses some ethical questions on how and who we allow to influence us, and how sharing and celebrating the “unfiltered” images of ourselves promotes body positivity and mental health.
Instagram: Jameela Jamil
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