Niki Kitsiou, Elementary School faculty
"Extended migration is a reality for so many people around the world. Every day, thousands of people lose their homes and are forced to flee their country. It is a big problem to choose not to talk about.
Greece currently has about 50,000 people that were forced to flee their homes while so many others passed over the years in their effort to reach their destination. People like us.
As a 5th grade class at ACS Athens, we worked on a project through which we explored what it means to be a refugee and which also included creating poems about refugees and their life journeys.
Creating these poems was the last step. We first created a word bank as a group, describing pictures related to refugees, and then each one of us used some of these words to create two verses of a poem.
One verse describing their hardships, and the other, a bit more hopeful. We tried to show how even if refugees undergo such difficulties, they are people like us; they can and want to be happy, and we need to help them in this effort.
After that, we tried to combine these verses with a partner. This was interesting as we got to connect similar thoughts and link our poems together in a way that the poems read like a conversation; we created a dialogue.
We cannot solve problems when we are not discussing them with each other. We cannot raise awareness without having a conversation.
We cannot find a way to help without communicating. We cannot understand or care about something when we don’t know different perspectives.
This is what we did... we tried to explore what it could be like; for them.
We hope our poems in this video inspire you to take action, to care."