18/12/21: To mark International Migrants Day today, Glencree asked friends of its Intercultural & Refugee Programme to reflect on what it means to them to be a migrant in Ireland in 2021.
“Immigration helps replenish a Nation’s creative workforce and International Migrants Day 2021 celebrates Migrants contributing socio-economically in their local Communities. Equal access to resources and opportunities affords everyone in society equal opportunity to thrive in their chosen field of endeavour.” Cllr. Uruemu Adejinmi, Mayor of Longford Municipal District.
“Nobody can voluntarily leave their family, friends and community and move to a foreign land. A simple gesture of welcome to a refugee or migrant into the community helps to heal the soul and gives them strength to make a contribution.” Patrick Khamis, member of African Irish Society Wicklow.
“On the occasion of International Migrants Day, we often reflect on the diverse contributions migrants make to societies but we also might remember, our own roots: those of being the descendants of other migrants or reflect on often perilous journeys some still have to make. And while we might differ in our cultures, languages, race and faiths, we all strive to have peaceful, healthy and equitable opportunities for ourselves, our families and friends.
“Being a migrant is not about losing oneself in a host culture or imposing one’s views on it, but inspiring and learning from each other so that in the end, we jointly make the world a better place. Happy International Migrants Day.” Fardus Sultan, Businesswoman, Lecturer, PhD Candidate and Activist.
“As Irish emigrants continue to contribute to better other economies, so many immigrants continue to contribute to a better Irish economy. Today I celebrate all who find the courage to leave everything behind for better life or protection & dare to start all over in a new country.” Cllr. Yemi Adenuga, Meath Councillor, Peace Commissioner and Ambassador.
“Today, more than one in every five people living in Dublin was born outside of Ireland or the UK. More than 65 different languages are spoken daily at home, all the world’s major religions are practised and at least one in twenty Dublin residents is visibly different, as a person of Asian or African descent . . . Dublin’s diversity is not just a story of temporary labour migration. Many migrants are here to stay.” Mary Lynch, Integration Officer, Community and Social Development, Dublin City Council
“It is a great learning experience and a privilege to work with migrants and other ethnic and faith minorities through Glencree. I have learnt that due to their lived experiences migrants have all of those traits that are sought after by education providers and employers, such as resilience, tenacity, creativity and adaptability. To be able to learn from their experiences is a great opportunity to be appreciated. Irish society can gain hugely from listening more to migrants and should celebrate International Day of Migrants every day!” Nadette Foley, Intercultural & Refugee Programme Manager, Glencree
For more information on Glencree Intercultural and Refugee Programme, click here.