When my grandmother was a young lady, the second world war was raging throughout Europe. Ruth, my grandmother, lived in Stettin, which is today known as Szczecin in Poland. Being truly in the line of fire, her and her family decided to leave their home. They covered the furniture, packed what was truly essential and left – on foot – what to them was their much beloved home.
My grandmother was a refugee.
I have heard many firsthand stories about the fear, devastation and uncertainty. I heard about having to find a safe place to stay, facing rejection, hate and trying to find a place to finally be able to feel welcome and possibly even home again.
My life on the other hand has been truly comfortable.
I grew up with love, opportunities and never had to truly worry about my well being in the sense of war, famine or freedom of speech. A pure matter of luck. A fact is, that in many parts of the world the luxury of being safe and free is not a standard. In 2014 this world encountered about 180 oppressive crisis and 25 wars – leaving aside the numerous, ongoing conflicts and serious disputes. 2014 also marked the year the first environmental refugees were granted residency. And 2015 has not proven to be any better…
The result is a dramatic increase of refugees, all around the world.
Refugees arriving in Germany, the country the jovoto headquarter is based in, come from Syria, Kosovo, Albania, Serbia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Macedonia, Eritrea, Nigeria, Pakistan and other countries. On their way to reach Europe and then Germany (or any other country in the North) many of them are passing through numerous countries. On top of traumatic fear for their life, they encounter not only country borders, but on top of everything language barriers.
There are many challenges.
Starting with trying to eliminate the reason people actually have to leave their beloved home and family, to easing their arrival, all the way to ensuring people truly feel part of their new home – there are many, many challenges to be overcome. During my research for this project, I have met and found out about planned or already existing impactful initiatives and dedicated individuals. Impressive and outmost moving.
We are now asking for your help.
jovoto, is a small, international and committed team. We have committed to this project, prepared much information and worked our way through some hurdles to get the “Breaking Barriers” project up and running online.
jovoto, also is a big, international and committed creative crowd. We are asking you to help ease at least one of the many obstacles that refugees and those trying to help face on a daily basis. We are asking you to break barriers – communication barriers – through donating your valuable and much proven creative talent.
Together, we can make a difference! Join us in the “Breaking Barriers” project.