Too often we put labels on people arriving by boat into Europe and we lose sight of the fact that they are people. In Poznan, children are leading the way in reminding us all that respect and dignity are something we all deserve.
In the “Gallery without a Home”, just launched in Poland, children are sharing a message of welcome to people seeking refuge in Europe, through their own drawings and art. It is a “gallery” that is moving in more ways than one, as it will eventually reach people who are themselves on the move.
What is striking is that the children have not looked for excuses why you cannot or should not help. We know these excuses too well from the adult world of politicians and decision makers. Instead, 300 children in grades 1-4 wanted to express their interest in the fate of children on move, their care and compassion.
The written and spoken wishes accompanying colorful drawings aim to encourage, to bring joy to life, and to comfort. It is a message that leaders across Europe could do well to listen to and learn from.
So far the children have prepared more than 300 postcards (including the ones featured on this page), during 32 workshops in their schools, with more to come. Their postcards will be delivered to children living currently in camps in Greece, Serbia and Italy.
Support is growing for this welcome message. Already, there is a long waiting list of schools and city halls, libraries, museums, and galleries across Poland who would like to host “The Gallery without a Home” in the future. The Gallery will soon go on tour to other countries.
This campaign was developed and is being run by local Polish organisations CEBAM Foundation and Migrant Info Point as well as Oxfam, and it is supported by the Mayor of Poznan. To find out more, go to: www.gallerywithouthome.com.
This entry posted by Dr. Stana Buchowska, Central and Eastern Europe Migration Alliance Advisor, Oxfam, on 1 February 2018.