go to Top

Side by Side with the Most Invisible Group in Hong Kong

Side by Side with the Most Invisible Group in Hong Kong

Living in prosperity and affluence, we strive for achieving outstanding academic performance, securing a decent job, finding our loved ones, and even chasing after our dream.  But have you ever imagined that we have to strive for stability?  Envision how your life would be if you were forced to flee from your homeland hit by catastrophic war and persecution...  Soumya Mittal, has got a better grasp of the refugees and asylum seekers in Hong Kong by taking part in a community engagement programme hosted by CEDARS last year.

Empower the refugees

It was the first time for Soumya to communicate face-to-face with refugees.  “I knew their life is hard, but I didn’t realize it was that hard even in Hong Kong,” Soumya sighed.  In the programme, she brainstormed and designed activities for refugees with other volunteers, such as cultural exchange, Cantonese, hiking and music workshops.  “I think hiking was the most memorable part of the programme as we were able to provide opportunities for them to improve well-being through exploring different hiking trails when they have free time,” she said.  

Refugee simulation

Although Soumya was told not to initiate the topics related to refugees’ background and homeland due to their sensitivity, she still got the picture of the appalling hardship undergone by refugees.  “Refugee Run” is an activity in the programme simulating refugees’ life, in which each participant was given a refugee identity.  Soumya recalled that she was surrounded by many dead bodies with the sound of gunshots, while someone kept screaming at her in a language she did not understand.  “It was a traumatic experience.  It was hard, but in reality it is much harder for them,” she said.

For Soumya, it was not only an inspiring out-of-classroom learning experience, but also a marvellous chance to empower and bring positive changes to the most invisible group of people in the territory.

Written by:
Katie Yu
Year 4, Faculty of Arts
March 2018

Side by Side with the Most Invisible Group in Hong Kong