From film festivals to football tournaments, comedy nights to carnivals, exhibitions, workshops, parties and much, much more, Refugee Week Scotland (15-21 June 2009) is an exciting programme of events happening across the country to celebrate diversity and raise awareness of refugee issues.
This year the theme of Refugee Week is HOME. For many refugees and asylum seekers, a new home in Scotland means safety from persecution and a life without fear. But what does home mean to you?
For me a large part of what home means to me relates to the natural environment. When I was a child, our garden was as important a part of what home meant as was our house. Now I've moved to a different city, the landscape and wildlife in and around Edinburgh mean home to me. When I lived in Malawi for a couple of years, the birds and the lake were as much a vital part of being there as were the students I taught, the friends I made and the colleagues I worked with. When I returned to the UK, I was returning home to the greenery and the familiar birds as much as to friends and family.
Now as I look up into the sky and see the swifts, enjoying their summer home, I know that if there ever comes a summer when they're not there, I will feel as though I've lost a vital part of my home.
Home for Refugee Week
What does home mean to you?
If you're in Scotland and want to include your thoughts on home on your blog, please include the first two paragraphs of this post and link to Refugee Week Scotland 09.