Our Work

Georgetown Refugee Festival

April 2019

Held the first refugee festival in Georgetown, Penang. The festival was attended by 1,000 people, both locals and foreigners, over three days. Artists from Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Burma, Iran and Malaysia used the platform to raise pertinent issues related to migration and the refugee crisis through poetry, music, film screening, photo presentation and panel discussions.

Workshop

March 2019

Conducted a workshop for refugees, in collaboration with Pratheebhan Saravanan’s Ajna Technologies, on how to build a website using WordPress. A total of 25 persons attended the workshop in collaboration with Adrian Pereira’s North South Initiative. Refugees from Syria, Afghanistan and Burma attended the two-day workshop under Beyond Border’s ongoing “Refugees Empowered through Technology” program.

Refugee Empowerment Program

April 2019

Kick started a refugee empowerment program, in collaboration with Tenaganita, to help refugees write a position paper to the Malaysian government on the right to work, healthcare and education. This refugee-led initiative, encouraged refugees to think through and identify their most pressing issues and ways in which these issues could be conveyed to the government, with the support of civil society organisations and the media. A total of 40 refugees from Burma, Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Somalia attended the two-day workshop held at Armada Hotel, Petaling Jaya with the support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Malaysia. ReAct (Refugee Action for Change) was born out of this engagement.

AGM

May 2019

Beyond Borders Malaysia’s first Annual General Meeting.

Refugee Festival

May 2019

The Refugee Fest : the fourth festival to celebrate the talents of refugees and to create platforms for them to speak up. The festival has grown to become an advocacy tool in itself, where refugee voices are heard loud and clear. The Refugee Fest 2019 also showcased the possibility of Malaysians and refugees working together to create a diverse, united society by calling for integration. Malaysian artists and our friends from different refugee communities performed together to show that refugees can and will contribute effectively to any given society if such opportunities are made possible for them to do so. The festival featured music and dance performances, theatre play, poetry readings, photo presentations, film screening and panel discussions.

Community Engagement Program

June 2019

A community engagement program in collaboration with UNHCR where artists from different refugee communities met and performed in Nigel Gardner plantation as a way of bridging the gap between the refugees and host communities. A total of ten refugees read poetry, gave music and dance performances and also did a short presentation explaining why refugees flee their home countries. We had overwhelming positive response from the plantation community, who reached out to help support the refugees.

Published Work

June 2019

Life Under Taliban, a zine illustrated by Afghan poet and artist Masuma Tavakoli, was published at The Refugee Fest. Masuma depicted her experiences with powerful illustrations and spoke about how she overcame her challenges and her journey to seek refuge in Malaysia. The zine was published with the support of the Canadian High Commission, Malaysia.

Theatre

July 2019

Collaboration with Jo Kukathas, curator for Blank_, a play written by Nassim Soleimanpour, and performed by Syrian actor/poet Mwaffaq Al Hajjar and Afghan actor, Farzana Hussaini. This marked the first foray by refugees into the Malaysian theatre scene.

Poetry Performance

October 2019

Poetry performance by poets from Syria and Afghanistan at Ilham Gallery, in collaboration with Jo Kukathas.

Capacity Building Workshop

September 2019

Capacity building workshop by Debbie Stothard, in collaboration with Tenaganita and supported by North South Initiative. Debbie helped the refugee community leaders to think through a position paper to the Malaysian government on the right to work, education and healthcare.

Online Petition

November 2019

Ran an online petition in collaboration with Tenaganita on the right to work for refugees. The petition garnered more than 5,000 signatures and is a preliminary initiative to the position paper to the government.

Training

December 2019

Training of LGBTI Trainers on UN Protection Mechanisms, Hanoi, Vietnam. This is a first step in working with and helping to empower LGBTI persons within the refugee community.

Media Advocacy Campaign

November 2019

Conducted a media advocacy campaign for leaders from different refugee groups in collaboration with Tenaganita and R.Age, to help educate the refugees on ways in which they can work with the media to convey their thoughts, ideas, aspirations and challenges to a wider audience that includes Malaysians, foreigners and the expat community.

Press Release

December 2019

Ran an online petition in collaboration with Tenaganita on the right to work for refugees. The petition garnered more than 5,000 signatures and is a preliminary initiative to the position paper to the government.

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