As part of our educational work, we run a writing programme for young people at KRAN, the Kent Refugee Action Network. Over several weeks, our students had the pleasure of working with Arts Charity; JimJam Arts, where we worked together to write a celebration story as part of JimJam Arts’ Living Advent Calendar project.
With an open brief, the students decided as a group to write about the journey of four young refugees, two brothers and two sisters. Written as a script for an audio play, the journey begins in Sudan, where the siblings have arrived after leaving Eritrea. From Sudan the family travel to Libya and across the ocean to Italy before finally arriving in Germany.
This emotional journey and the experiences the characters go though have all been written and decided by our students. When the script was finished, they also worked together to take on those characters and it is their voices you hear throughout the play.
Alongside reading their own script, their narration of the story and recording it, we also recorded sound effects including background talking, snoring, whispering and laughing. Some of our students can also be heard singing songs from their own country – Eritrea.
Listen to 'The Journey' below
Here’s what some of our students said about the project:
“The music and celebration really made me happy, because you know the family felt safe and were happy they had reached Germany.”
“It was hard to write the story, because there are parts that are how many of us remember it, from our own journey when we left our countries. It was difficult to think about that again, but it was really good to do it”