Last week students from all year groups took part in events to recognise Refugee Week. This week is supported internationally and is built around World Refugee Day on the 20 June.
Refugee Week was established as a direct reaction to hostility in the media and society in general towards refugees and asylum seekers.
The ultimate aim of our week was to create a better understanding of different communities, to counter this negative climate in the media surrounding the issue and defend the importance of sanctuary and the benefits it can bring to both refugees and host communities.
We were privileged to have welcomed the Global Link interactive multimedia exhibition Escape to Safety. The exhibition enabled students to experience something of what it is like to be a refugee seeking asylum in Britain. Each student walked through a labyrinth of 8 stations depicting the different stages a refugee experiences before seeking asylum in Britain. On a portable MP3 player, they were accompanied by refugee voices from Sudan, Afghanistan and Iran interacting with border immigration officials and the media.
To support this in Geography lesson students looked at the representation of refugees in the media, discovered the facts amongst the fiction, tracked the journey of refugees and wrote poems, songs and letters about the current crisis.
The hope is that students will develop an educated opinion about the situation, develop critical thinking skills when looking at literature and have an empathy and understanding towards others who are different to themselves.