A book of stories and dreams for the future by Syrian and Palestinian children living in County Mayo.
Kids’ Own works in defence of children’s right to culture and offers a space for children’s real experiences and voices to be shared through publishing and the arts. This project seeks to highlight the experiences of migrant children living in Ireland and celebrate all children in Ireland as equal and active citizens.
On five Saturdays in April and May of 2018, a group of children gathered in the Linenhall in Castlebar. They arrived from Westport, Claremorris Ballina to meet the children from Castlebar to explore their experiences in image and words. They shared their joy in meeting one another, in greeting each other in Arabic, the shared language of Syrians and Palestinians. As the weeks went by it was clear how much the children appreciated the opportunity to meet each other, the opportunity to engage culturally and communicate through the arts. They captured their exuberance of living in County Mayo, of going to school, of making new friends, of continuing their cultural values, their language, their religious beliefs, and food preferences. They wrote of their journeys to Ireland from the war in Syria and Palestine and shared their hopes for the future. – Mary Branley, writer