Working collaboratively, surviving uncertainty

Thursday

We continued to hold spaces both inside and outside at the CAMIE where there was a sense of calmness and familiarity. A few of the boys talked with us about the death of one of their friends and peers, who was killed on the road earlier this week. The extreme risks that so many of them are forced to take were very present in the space this week.

Young people from many countries joined us to make drawings and tracings from postcards, taking time out of the boisterous atmosphere outside to find images that connected to them. Many young people from the Oromia community also joined the group, making drawings of animals, flags and a car that can fly and transport them safely to the UK.

One young boy from Syria, who we have come to know well, rushed in at the end of the day to drink water and then suddenly have a moment of creative inspiration. Taking the cue from another young persons plasticine sculpture, he joyfully crafter riders for a number of animals that others had made.

To us these interactions highlight the importance of an open and responsive space that is flexible to the needs of the people we work with. Some come in and need to sit with us for hours, but for others, vital and meaningful connections can be made in fleeting moments.

Friday

There was a continuation of the interagency meetings that enables us all to maintain good connections and communication about the residents we support. It also allows us to share information about the current situation of the camp and the plans for its potential closure.

The afternoon’s group in the Médecins du Monde tent was a well-utilized space today with many residents joining us to make animations, drawings, calligraphy and painting. It allowed for people to bring a myriad of themes into their artwork; ranging from romantic comedies, to traumatic oppression at the hands of the Taliban regime.

Many people, some unknown to each other and meeting for the first time in the space, made collaborative and responsive work. They supported each other in creating narratives and a drawing that became the backdrop for an animation they worked on together.

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