Refugee Voices, NaTakallam’s guest speaker sessions, are back for Refugee Week 2022!
For the third year running, you can apply to host a virtual Refugee Voices speakers at your event for free, thanks to scholarships from Ben & Jerry’s UK.
Refugee Voices speakers join virtually from their locations across the world, but can take part in both in-person and online events.
What is Refugee Voices?
Refugee Voices is a powerful and interactive experience to bring the stories of refugees directly to the table and engage in dialogue with your community. Each virtual session contributes directly to refugee livelihoods, at a time when they might be cut off from the local labour market, in camps, or in other transit circumstances.
Led by NaTakallam’s Conversation Partners (CPs), Refugee Voices virtual sessions provide open conversation with CPs’ sharing personal stories, the context that forced him/her to leave, and the challenges of rebuilding a life. You can also choose to focus sessions around mutual interests such as education, history, human rights and music – or the Refugee Week 2022 theme of ‘Healing’.
Refugee Voices have not only proved to be an impactful and enriching experience for participants, but each session contributes directly to refugee livelihoods.
For Refugee Week NaTakallam and Ben & Jerry’s have teamed up to offer a limited number of *free* sessions. To apply to host a free session, please complete this form.
How do I host a speaker?
If you sign up, we’ll follow up with more advice but here are some practical tips to consider for now:
- You’ll need one or two people to organise this event which includes inviting people to the session and helping guide the conversation on the day
- It’s recommended that you have a minimum of 10-15 people virtually joining the session
- It takes around 2 weeks to set up to give CPs a chance to check their availability, respond, and prepare ahead of time so please get in touch early!
- These sessions are a great way to have an open and informative conversation in a safe and empowering way. Enjoy these new connections and have some fun 😊
Who can apply for the scholarship?
Groups that haven’t held a Refugee Voices session in the past, are based in the UK and would not otherwise be able to pay for a speaker will be prioritised for funding.
NaTakallam (“we speak” in Arabic) is an award-winning, woman-founded social enterprise that delivers high-quality, impactful language, translation and cultural exchange services by vetted and highly-skilled refugees and displaced persons worldwide.
NaTakallam works with a range of expert CPs including Mona and Bénis – check out their bios below. They match groups and CPs based on availability and interests.
Mona is in her 20s and originally from Damascus, Syria. Before being resettled to her current home in Victoria, Canada, she lived in Beirut, Lebanon for several years. Mona has a degree from the Faculty of Fine Arts at the University of Damascus, and in her spare time, she loves singing, drawing, and painting. Here’s a clip of Mona singing to a classroom in Chicago.
Bénis is in his 40s and originally from Burundi. He now lives in Uganda after being forced to leave due to political conflict. Bénis holds a Masters in Didactics of French as a Foreign Language. In his free time he loves to play guitar and watch comedy movies.