Timisoara Refugee Art Festival is an event dedicated to the understanding and promotion of common values. We think it is necessary that we discover what we have in common, what brings us together and defines us as human beings rather than search for what keeps as apart.
Every year, wars, poverty and climate changes force millions of people to leave their home land in search for a safer place for themselves and their families. Fear of the new and misinformation are most of the times reasons for which they are received with hatred and violence. But these will not stop the refugee flow, will not stop wars and climate change and will not solve the problem of poverty. Moreover, fear and hatred only make refugee integration in the community more difficult and continue to generate more fear and hatred.
In this context, through Timisoara Refugee Art Festival, we aim at going beyond the differences which separate us and showing the humanity lying in all of us. We think that both refugees and non-refugees love the same way, fear the same way and dream the same way. They both need security, understanding, hope and an environment where they can pursue and fulfil their dreams. If we can see beyond the differences, we’ll discover that deep down we are all human beings. Moreover, cultural differences can be a priceless asset that can bring new learning if we are open to it. Evolution is based on diversity not uniformity.
The aim of the Timisoara Refugee Art Festival is not to elicit pity towards the refugees and their situation. On the contrary, we wish to create an environment in which they can express themselves with dignity.
The initiative is part of the project “NiCER – Innovative Methods for the Integration of Young Refugees“, financed by the European Commission and implemented in Timisoara by AIDRom and the Intercultural Institute Timisoara. The project is reproduced in 6 European cities, partners within the project: Rome, Brussels, Seville, Liverpool, Nicosia, Berlin. Between January and April 2017, 30 young refugees and non-refugees, aged between 9 and 25 took part in music, theatre, painting and film workshops and the results of their work will be staged on the 13th of May 2017 within Timisoara Refugee Art Festival.