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Refugee Week 2022

Nottingham Refugee Week is back!

Our theme this year is ‘Healing’. Through creativity and conversations, Refugee Week 2022 will be a celebration of community, mutual care, and the human ability to start again. Our festival launches with a fabulous line-up of music, dance, food, craft, family fun, wellbeing goodies and stalls from refugee organisations across the city on Saturday 18th June, 11am-4pm, on Sneinton Market; please join us to celebrate sanctuary in our city. Everything is free and all are welcome!’.

What is Nottingham Refugee Week?

Nottingham Refugee Week is an annual cultural festival that unites communities and organisations across our city. It celebrates the culture of sanctuary we have built here in Nottingham, and is an act of welcome, a gesture of solidarity and a shared celebration with people who have sought refuge here. It exists both to raise awareness of the reasons why people are forced to seek refuge – persecution, war, poverty and conflict – and also to celebrate the contributions made by refugees and asylum-seekers to the economic, cultural and social life of the city. Refugee Week began nationally in 1998 as a direct reaction to hostility in the media and society in general towards refugees and asylum seekers. It is now one of the leading national initiatives working to counter this negative climate, defending the importance of sanctuary and the benefits it can bring to both refugees and ‘host’ communities. Refugee Week is coordinated nationally by our friends at Counterpoint Arts.

When does it run?

Nottingham Refugee Week runs annually, to coincide with World Refugee Day on 20th June. This year, Nottingham’s celebrations span 18th-26th June 2022.

Why is ‘healing’ this year’s theme?

‘Healing’ is the theme selected nationally by Counterpoint Arts. As they put it so beautifully: ‘Healing means recovering from a painful experience or situation, so that we can continue to live. No-one understands this better than those who have lost their homes and had to build new lives from scratch. We have much to learn from refugees about holding onto hope when going on seems impossible – as well as about how art, creativity and community can help us to heal.  Those going through the asylum system also know that healing is an ongoing process, made harder by poverty, housing difficulties and the threat of being detained or deported. Asking for change, so that refugees can truly feel safe, is an act of care. Whether it’s about looking after ourselves and each other at difficult times, overcoming political divisions or coming together to fight for the survival of our shared planet, healing matters to all of us. Whoever and wherever you are, we hope you’ll join us for Refugee Week 2022 to imagine a world where healing replaces harm, and care becomes our shared currency.’