Stories of migration told through spoken word, workshops and art at Refugee Week in Preston

Mohammed Ehlalouch with some of his artwork
Mohammed Ehlalouch with some of his artwork
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Spoken word poetry, film screenings and dancing will honour Refugee Week in Preston.

The week-long entertainment kicks off today and takes place across the city centre.

The array of events launches with a workshop from the British Red Cross on the experiences of asylum seekers and refugees in their journeys travelling to the UK.

Today's lunchtime workshop at The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) also looks into the physical, emotional and mental health of asylum seekers when they arrive and the challenges they face integrating in the UK.

Two workshops on Tuesday, also at UCLan, will discuss human rights issues and the war, political unrest and environmental conditions some face in their own countries and welcoming people into the UK.

Throughout the week an art exhibition on the journeys of sanctuary seekers by Mohammed Ehlalouch is open to visitors at The Larder cafe in Lancaster Road.

A ‘celebration of dance’ will invite women to Sahara in Fishwick Parade on Thursday. The evening promises workshops in dance styles from different cultures.

Friday sees a lunchtime talk at UCLan entitled ‘Black people in Britain before Windrush’. The premises of the lecture by Dr Raphael Hoermann is that, while large scale migration of black people began after The First World War, in fact black people have been living in the UK since at least the Roman times.

The Windrush theme continues into Friday with another lecture at UCLan looking at ideas of beauty.

Refugee Week culminates on Saturday with a maker’s market displaying craft work by refugees and asylum seekers at the People’s Production Lab (PPL). Then, as an evening finale, spoken word poet Naveed Ahmed will perform his work at the PPL.

For a full list of dates and times for events see preston.cityofsanctuary.org/events-2