Exhibition marks World Refugee Day
UNHCR Türkiye marked World Refugee Day with a photography exhibition, “Life Through My Eyes”, from a series of photography workshops where Turkish and refugee children living in Mardin province, southeast, came together to reflect on the environment they live in through their own lenses.
Every year, World Refugee Day is marked with a variety of events in many countries around the world to draw attention to the plight of those fleeing conflict.
The inauguration of the exhibition, organized by the representative of the UNHCR in Turkey, Philippe Leclerc, took place recently at the Atatürk Cultural Center in Istanbul.
“The photographs in this exhibition portray the creativity, joy and beauty of children, conveying our primary goal of enabling children to live their lives as children. This remarkable initiative is timely, as conflict is uprooting people at an unprecedented rate. Wherever they come from, people forced to flee must be welcomed. What remains universal is the right to seek security. The borders must remain open to them. They need our help and support more than ever, especially to be able to live with their families, including their grandparents and siblings, as separation can often occur in times of conflict,” Leclerc said. .
“Since 2014, Turkey has hosted the largest refugee population in the world, with some 4 million refugees and asylum seekers benefiting from a strong legislative framework, almost half of whom are children with special needs, dreams and hopes for the future,” he added. .
Thanks to the “Mobile Darkroom Photography Project”, led by UNHCR Türkiye and Sirkhane Darkroom and under the aegis of the Art Anywhere association, 270 Turkish, Syrian and Iraqi children aged 7 to 17 received basic technical training on analogue photography in the Mardin workshops.
They were also informed about children’s rights, ecological awareness and gender equality through games and had the opportunity to reflect on their impressions and feelings on these topics.
The workshop enabled children of all nationalities to learn to live together, to become active learners and to create with each other.