Home on the Wind

In this section, we invite you to take a moment and reflect on what home means to you. We often think of forced displacement as a distant reality, one that does not concern us, one to which it is hard to relate or fully comprehend. But how about we re-frame displacement through the warm and familiar prism of the notion of "home"? What does home mean to you? Can you imagine losing your home? Let alone without notice, or a chance to say goodbye?

This film was made with twenty young people from eight countries, each sharing their idea of "home" both through words and images.

Would you like to share what "home" means to you? Send your images, drawings and voice recordings to Your contributions will be used for a public art installation on the theme of "home".

Footsteps on the Wind  Refugee Workshop

We worked with refugees to help us develop the story of Noor and Joseph in Footsteps on the Wind. They created wonderful artworks and with their input we were able to integrate metaphors and symbols relating to their experiences.

Hope is a Game Changer – The Indestructible Ball Project

In many developing countries it is common for children to repurpose string and old garbage bags into soccer balls. To these children, soccer is much more than just a game. Hope is a Game Changer provides indestructible soccer balls to organizations who use soccer as a platform to teach life skills. Each child is required to participate in one of these programs before they can trade their old ball in for a new one.

Bobby Sager has produced these balls, available to ship to partner organizations.


Sketches & Drawings from Asylum Seeking Children in Greece

Islington Centre for Refugees and Migrants

Art and writing around a creative hearth - "The centre is our family, our bridge and connection to the community."

Here you see images from the Art and Writing Class - a core part of Islington Centre for Refugees and Migrants’ activities. Author Sita Brahmachari and author / illustrator Jane Ray have been working together in the art and writing Hearth for five years, together with Illustrator Jane Ray, have teamed up to run a creative art, writing and conversation class with refugees. The work coming out of these workshops is moving and hopeful, and has been exhibited at Amnesty International HQ, the London ICA, and various libraries.

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Poetry from the Islington Centre

In My Hands

My hands are strong
My hands are rough
My hands are smooth
Bejewelled with rings, nails painted all the colours of the rainbow
My hands are gardener’s hands
My hands are strong
My hands are weak


My hands belong to a carpenter, boxer, writer, artist, musician, mother
In my hands I hold nothing
They are empty
In my hands I hold a rainbow
In my hands I hold hope In my hands I hold love
In my hands I hold the globe
In my hands I hold a rose

Seeds of the Earth

We share our paintings of fruit and vegetables that might help us to remember the words in English when we go to market or visit your stall.
We share a recipe for cauliflower with garlic, chilli, onions and tomatoes
We marvel at the perfect flower pyramids clustered like green jewel mountains
We share a recipe for lamb curry served on a cabbage leaf
We remember childhoods picking pineapples from fields
Long days of freedom grazing fruits of the field

And in our arms we hold a sleeping baby called Miracle

We talk of vegetables and the fruit of the earth

We talk of life
And layers
'Day by day' a Syrian mother says... she must take life day by day... leaf layer by leaf layer
'Always remembering that there is a heart.'
We marvel at the beauty of nature’s harvest
The colours of pomegranate seeds against a cabbage leaf
Afterwards people take the fruit they want to taste


And in our arms we hold a sleeping baby called Miracle.

It's what we find every week in the room
Despite the struggle of every single person’s journey
A faith that this new earth on which people walk can bear fruit once again.

In our arms we hold a sleeping baby called Miracle.

Painting Water

I paint the water of my home

I paint the land and the water
I paint a bridge and the water flows under it

When I paint the calm water
The noise of the world grows quiet
The volume’s turned down

I start with the colour and let it flow
blues and greens trickle into streams
wash into lakes
wave into oceans

Painting water is a freeing feeling
start with the colour and let it flow


Colour washes over me
through me
Into me
I am bathing baby
Fishing in the Indian Ocean
Whale watching on the shores of childhood memories
Sitting on the banks of the Niger Delta
I am a boat man
Feeling the force of waterfalls in Eritrea, Congo, Mauritius
Painting water is a freeing feeling
Start with the colour and let it flow

Islington Centre for Refugees and Migrants

This is the key that unlocks the door to my future,
My dreams and desires, my heart, my life
This key will be for my access,
To open my mind, expand my brain...
It is the key to my imagination
This key means success
This is the key to my personal story,
The key that unlocks my diary
My small history
The key that leads me on my way
To my family, to my spirit, to begin my journey.
This key is for my own door, my rented car, the car I need
for my journey


This is the key to writing my first book,
The key to my cupboard
To lock things away and keep them safe
The key to my past and
A way back to the future

This door leads to the Islington Centre for Refugees and Migrants
To my classroom. It is a doorway in to school -
To new friendships,
A quiet place
It is a doorway to go in to, and come out from.
A doorway to the sounds of voices learning to live again

Speaking, painting, drawing, writing, dancing, healing
A doorway to and from people's stories that should be told.
This is a doorway to strength of mind.
One key...many doors.
Keep this key safe - you, yourself may need it one day.

Essence of Welcome

Enter smells of the Congo forest
Enter Grandfather's garden in Iran
Enter mountain herbs of Greece and Italy
Enter flora of Siberian Spring

Stirring cooking pots of Turkey and Algeria
Flowering fruit of Ivory Coast
Jasmine arbours of a Kolkata balcony
Frankincense of ancient altars
Mediterranean heat on oregano, lavender, thyme

Barefoot evening walk
Herb scented soles
Enter scent of peace
Eyes closing on pain
Soothing words in my language
Touch of my hand
Heart beat slows
Shoulders soften
Sense-memory stirred


Bringing me back to
My artist hands
My carpenter’s hands
My writer’s hands
My trumpeter’s hands
My grandmother’s cooking pot
My hands that held my children
Held in yours
Now cared for
Softened, smoothed and scented in oils
I can find my own scent
Two drops of rose oil bubble on the surface
Then sink to the bottom of the carrier oil
I watch its slow journey
I take away with me this rich perfume
This precious gift
I name it
'Essence of welcome'

One River

Rivers flow through the people in this room
From the Great Nile to the Congo
From The Tigris to the Euphrates
From Ubangi and Kasai
Rivers flow through the people in this room
Sasandra, Luozi, Ndjili, Makhavali, Abay, Semelike, Dimbokro, Tovol
Rivers flow through the people in this room

From Kizilirmak near Ankara
Along the river Firat joining Turkey to Syria
Flowing on to friends In Elbistan from the Caroon In Iran to the Nile in Sudan
From the Lalouri in Cameroon
Rivers flow through the people in this room
To the Paraiba in Brazil
To the Victoria in Sri Lanka
From the blue Nile to the Red Sea


We sing of the rivers of childhood homes
Now dammed
Rivers of joy and heat and sun
Rivers of ice spring water, crystal Clear
The bridge that was built
For war to cross
Our rivers must find another course
Away from the lands where we were born

Rivers of change, our memories, our future
Flowing from our lands into yours
Many rivers flow through the people in this room
One world, one life, many rivers

Pleasant Place

Take me back to the sunny day
Where a sweet breeze whispers
Through the weeping leaves
Walk with me
Walk me to that river

Take me to where the willow grows
Where the sun shines
Along the river lines
Walk with me
Walk me to that river

Walk me to the secret place
Where the sun brings us her warm embrace
Walk with me
Walk me to that river


Paint me a new river
Paint me a new tree
Paint me a bird that sings of love to me
Paint me the sunshine
Paint me a smile
Paint me some laughter
Paint me a child
Paint a new river
Paint a new tree
Paint a new life of freedom for me

Walk me to that river
Hold me by your hand
Take me back to that river
To that green and pleasant land