The We Are Here Media Team consist of undocumented refugees in limbo. We are in limbo because we are in-between countries, we cannot stay here and we cannot go back to our country. Both countries are rejecting us. We think the refugee problem is not only a problem of politics, but also of society. That is why we are becoming citizen journalists.
The main problem we want to tackle is the lack of visibility. We want to learn to become independent journalists, photographers, writers and broadcasters. Our aim is to create awareness with our stories and our message, to raise our voices. For us, raising our voice and letting everyone know that we are here is a way to claim a place in this society.
Came to the Netherlands in 2009.
When I think of home I think of my country, then I feel home. When I sleep and I’m in my bed I think of the war in my country to stop. I want my country to be safe, that is wat I hope. I like the city where I’m from because it’s close to my family. There is a mountain where we went to play as a kid, also a jungle but right now when I’m thinking of home, I’m just thinking of my country to be safe. I try to chance something.
Came to the Netherlands in 2009.
When I think of home…I think of Saoudi-Arabia. But I also think of the Netherlands, because I am here. I can’t go anywhere, you I have to feel at home here. But I like Amsterdam, a busy city.
When I think of home, home is everything, home is life. If you have a home than you can do something. If you don’t have a home your life is unstable. Home should come first. Where I grew up, the peoples and places I know, where I went to play, just the place where I grew up, the children, these are all things I miss of home. If you have a home you see everyone who is important for you, to see them and to play with them, a sweet life. I miss this kind of thing. Actually I miss all my country.
Came to the Netherlands in 2001.
When I think of home, I miss it. I miss everything, including the culture, the weather, the food and the life in Africa. There, we live in groups. There is no individual life there. I miss the people. But still, I have a lot of friends in the Netherlands. I sometimes feel home here as well. I have lived in Amsterdam continuously for fifteen years, I have never done that in Ethiopia. I have lived more in this city than in any other city in my life. It is kind of my home city. I have lived in every corner of Amsterdam. Before the WAH group started, I had to work hard at ‘black jobs’ in order to rent a room for myself. I lived alone, and now I have a group, and I have friends.
When I think of home, I think of the people that for me can make any place feel like home. Home for me is not just a physical location. I really like the city where I grew up, and it feels like home but I think that this feeling I have with that place comes from the good memories I have of it. I would feel like a stranger being in the house where I grew up without the people that made it home for me. Having my family and friends nearby, that is home for me.
When I think of home, I think of my family. Friends can make the city you live in more fun and exciting, but only family can make it feel like home. My sister’s place in Amsterdam feels like home, just like the house my little sister and my parents still live in does. And my best friend’s house, of course, she is basically family too.
When I think of home I tend to think of my childhood. I still remember all the places I have lived, and sometimes miss them. Currently I have a lot of roommates, who can be like family to me. Sharing stories every day with each other, how mundane they might be, really creates a strong connection over time. I think this connection is also linked to feeling at home, which I do.
When I think of home, I think of several places. Firstly, the place where I live at the moment. It’s the first time I’m living with my boyfriend in a ‘real’ apartment which is all ours. I’m feeling more at home in this place than I have ever done somewhere else, it’s warm, safe and ‘gezellig’. But I also think of the house where I grew up, to me this place holds many memories that I cherish. I feel home is not just a house or room, it’s family, love and friendship that make you feel really at home.