Experiences of Refugee Youth in Montreal

We have recently completed a 160 page book/DVD of first-person narratives by youth with refugee experiences. The book includes twenty first-person digital stories and films about migration, belonging, tolerance, cultural identity, and personal resilience. The project also offers practical insights on using digital storytelling, mapping,video, photovoice, soundscapes, and oral history in classroom and community settings.

Life Stories Montreal and Mapping Memories are currently organizing a series of school visits to engage 13-17 year olds around the subjects of migration, belonging, tolerance, cultural identity, and personal resilience. Three young individuals with refugee experience will share their own stories and initiate peer-to-peer discussions intended to build empathy and to encourage students to embrace cultural differences and discover their own family and community histories.

Our partner, The Canadian Council for Refugees , is a non-profit umbrella organization committed to the rights and protection of refugees and immigrants in Canada. They coordinate a youth network on refugee and immigration issues across Canada.

To get involved - www.mappingmemories.ca

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Refugee youth experiences will be documented and explored through peer-to-peer life story interviewing. Interview methodology and materials have been developed and the youth will be trained in peer interviewing as well as taking a writing workshop.

Collective Storytelling
The youth will be trained in new media, video and interviewing techniques. Videos will be broadcast on a web portal as well as shown at public screenings. Results may also be broadcast on television and in radio podcasts. A short, 20 minute documentary on the interviews will also be produced. In the final year of the project, the youth will visit schools and screen their film(s) as well as distribute research and curriculum materials. Documenting youth experiences and making them accessible on the internet will strengthen initiatives like the Canadian Council for Refugee`s Youth Network, which connects youth refugees in Montreal, and throughout Canada.