Solidaritee: Perspective

It is very easy in times like these to only think of our own troubles. It is easy to forget the troubles that others face, especially when they seem so far.

Current events have shown that people are willing to give what they can to help the lives of others. It is important to remember that this should be carried out for people near or far, and, especially for those that really need it.

Thousands of refugees strongly believe it is worth putting their life at risk to leave places that generate ‘well grounded fear of persecution’, indeed unbearable for those just trying to live a normal life. Of course, the key to solving this issue is to ensure that across the world, people feel safe in their own country. But this is a big task to undertake. Solidaritee works on the issues we face today, for refugees whose choice has already been taken away.

We must remember, ‘no one leaves home unless in the mouth of a shark’ (Warsan Shire).

It seems easy to pass by the facts and figures, even stories that we hear, on the horrendous troubles that refugees face. There is even an anti-refugee rhetoric which views migrants as almost an enemy of European countries, countries who can seemingly only serve the interests of their own people. Refugees are used as tool for those in power to have an enemy on which to look vulnerable against, so that they can exploit an almost fearful population to maintain their position as those in power.

Why has this become so normal? Why has the world become a place of division and greed? Why can’t we empathise with people, who’s experience may well have been ours if we were born a few thousand kilometres away?

Migrants and refugees are people too, and we need to put ourselves in the shoes of others. Imagine a life where you do not know what will happen tomorrow. Imagine a life where you have been ripped away from your parents and forced to take a perilous journey alone. Imagine a life where you have to sleep on the floor, with no resources or infrastructure, vulnerable to disease. Imagine a life of uncertainty for every waking hour. I am sure now we can begin to empathise with the feelings of uncertainty that migrants face, but this is their life for the long term.

It seems very ironic that the moment our country needs something, we can demand help and assistance, but others cannot. I am sure if our country were war torn, if we faced persecution on a daily basis just for our gender, skin colour or religion, or if we were forced to join the military at a young age, we would want to flee. And I am sure that we would demand that others accept and help us.

We need to think about this when we think about the lives of migrants, who have nowhere to call home. We can put a perspective on our relative privilege and decide to support causes such as Solidaritee.  Solidaritee raises awareness for the problems that migrants face, especially the legal issues, which are key to addressing their future. The t-shirts are not just visible displays of solidarity, but when you purchase a T-Shirt, over 75% of the total cost of the t-shirt goes directly to grants which fund legal aid to help Europe’s most vulnerable, those that will usually be exploited by the system, to give them a legitimate claim to asylum and reduce the risk of being deported. Your money goes to the people who actually need it, not large corporations, not charitable schemes which appear altruistic at first but are uncovered as rather inadequate in addressing the issues that are actually occurring.

During this Corona crisis, Solidaritee has also launched a COVID–19 fund which will be going towards helping people living in camps who have a grave threat of the virus. Please think about how you can help this cause. Only £10 will make a big difference to someone, who otherwise has nothing. We may be struggling ourselves, and we have every right to feel this way too, but it is important that we have a perspective that allows us to live the way we do. We can only live this way because others cannot.

Please seriously consider purchasing a T Shirt here: https://www.solidaritee.org.uk/shop

If you would like to find out more, or help purchasing a T Shirt, please get in contact with me (@jasminarciero on Instagram)

If you would like a better perspective on the lives of migrants take a look here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yJG8EqliYsI

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J-B6KWcJmos&t=269s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tkkVnQEB1mE