During #RefugeeWeek we’re listening to the stories and experiences of those who have journeyed across the world to seek safety. Nouran’s story offers inspiration in finding hope for ourselves and for our communities amidst uncertainty and difficult circumstances.
Where did you come from? What was life like there?
My name is Nouran and I come from Syria. When I remember how life was like in Syria, I always think of it as a dream but ended with a nightmare. I remember the stunning sea, the crowded towns, the narrow streets where the smell of jasmine showed love to the orphans and poor children. The country of seven rivers, the view from the mountain ‘Qassuen’ in Damascus, the old sloping roads and the old neighbourhoods with her equally as old houses. My beautiful county with your woman in white hijabs that compare to pearls. The coffee smell in the mornings with the Quran sound of the imam’s lovely sound from the minaret of the mosque. But Now, Syria is breaking my heart. That dream ended with the nightmare of broken buildings acting as cold, rough blankets to the crying children, to whom the memory of their mothers in white hijabs seems like a distant dream of angles-… and the smell of coffee has been replaced with blood, the memory of the Quran with the sound of imam, replaced with the sound of screaming siblings being ripped away from each other.
What has your experience of life in the UK been like?
I am very grateful to be in the UK and probably the best thing happened for me since I was born until now is that I moved to the UK. When I first came to the UK I have come across many people that judged me for who I am and told me to go back to my country but the majority of people I came across has honestly made me love being in the UK even more. I look at the UK as a place of hope and a safe haven as it has provided me with safety, the education that I have always dreamed of, and a roof over my head.
How has COVID-19 affected you?
Covid-19 has definitely affected my mental health in some ways and brought back similar memories to me. For example, having to lock myself down at home and not go outside reminded me how I had to lock my self down during the war.
What are your hopes for your future?
My hope for my future has always been to be myself and always chase my dream no matter how difficult it is to get there. To change the world to a better place for us and for the next generation, a world free of inequality and judgment. I hope that I will always find success in making my dreams become true and in helping others.
As Churches our hope is for a society that welcomes the stranger. We believe that we can all play a part in this, by creating a
welcoming environment in our churches, communities and as a
To find out more about how you can add your voice to call for changes to bring hope to more refugees and asylum seekers have a look at our Journeys of Hope page.