Reframing Migration

In 2016 a Reframing Migration workshop was held in London to better understand migration as social innovation and "start thinking about interactions with refugees as collaboration, rather than a form of charity, and what that would achieve", Alina Muller, Silent University.

Context

The Reframing Migration workshop was a collaborative initiative between Social Innovation Lab Kent at Kent County Council, the University of the Arts London and Professor Ezio Manzini's Design for Social Innovation and Sustainability Network. The findings were reported into the South East Strategic Network for Migration Practitioners. 

The Reframing Migration initiative demonstrates how it is possible to co-create a community where migration is social innovation, where “people on the move” are welcomed and collaborate as equals, generating value for everyone. Reframing Migration gives a theoretical framework with foundations in reason and inspiration from humanity, demonstrating that by learning from each other we will find more similarities than differences, that enable us to live well together.

Initially the need to provide an alternative dialogue was raised by a Community Development worker in East Kent, who identified an increased risk of community tensions in the summer of 2015 and similar experiences across Europe. A collaborative workshop was developed, building on the Cultures of Resilience programme at the University of the Arts London, aiming to view migration with a fresh perspective, a positive lens. As a volunteer in the Calais 'jungle', and actively involved in welcoming refugees into the UK, Emma was able to ensure the Reframing Migration initiative was grounded in real life and current experiences. 

The Reframing Migration workshop explored positive practices of migration as social innovation - where people from resident and migrant communities are living, working and collaborating together with positive outcomes for the whole of society.

 Mazi Mas, Reframing Migration caterers, a roaming restaurant serving global home cooking in the heart of London

Mazi Mas, Reframing Migration caterers, a roaming restaurant serving global home cooking in the heart of London

We hope the collective effort behind this report can provide an alternative to the dominant political narrative. Global citizens from around the world with roots in Afghanistan, Brazil, Democratic Republic of Congo, Denmark, Eritrea, Ethiopia, France, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kurdistan, Mauritius, New Zealand, Portugal, Scotland, Seychelles, Syria, Somalia, Sudan, The Netherlands, Tanzania and the United Kingdom, have shared invaluable perspective, contributions and inspiration. Thankyou.

M.O. AKA The Dream holds the “hope of arriving in my home, where my tears are my own”. Until the wars are over and people are able to return in peace to the lands of their birth, this extended community will continue to welcome, building bridges across borders and friendships that will last a lifetime.

Going Forward

From January 2017 onwards Emma is continuing the Reframing Migration work in Scotland in collaboration with IRISS, with a view to co-developing learning resources with Social Services practitioners. Below are the slides she used for a workshop at the Social Work Action Network Conference held in Middlesbrough in April 2017.

The Welcome Tent is an ex-army catering tent, repurposed from war to peace, which was donated to raise awareness of the current refugee humanitarian crisis. This roaming learning space was created after a group of us met in the Calais 'jungle' in 2015 and are now reunited in the UK. We aim to use The Welcome Tent to connect people through the universal languages of food, music, art and poetry. Our first outing was at the Hythe Life Food Festival in Kent in 2016, celebrating global flavours while supporting local producers. More UK dates are planned for this summer and we will be venturing into Europe from August. We welcome new host enquiries and all ideas for collaboration. 

 Click to read more about our journey around Europe cooking 'recipes of HOPE' with people and places that WELCOME

Click to read more about our journey around Europe cooking 'recipes of HOPE' with people and places that WELCOME