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Celebrating 5 years of Sanctuary in Inverurie, Scotland

Cllr Judy Whyte – Inverurie and District

Friends of Al-Amal group in Inverurie in Aberdeenshire celebrated an important landmark for their community on the 21st of April: many of their Syrian friends have completed 5 years in Scotland – each and every person was cheered and applauded, and welcomed again as they spoke about how it felt to arrive in Scotland, and shared their hopes for a future for themselves and their families.

The group already have a weekly coffee morning, but they decided to hold a special celebratory session to coincide with  Celebrating Sanctuary Week to mark 5 years of refugee resettlement in the area. Guests were invited to join what ordinarily is a local event: Sabine Chalmers from Scottish Faiths Action for Refugees, Gün Orgun, Scotland Coordinator for City of Sanctuary, Councillor Judy Whyte  of Inverurie and District and last but not least, Eve and Bella who are students from the Glasgow School of Art STAR society, who led a craft session making colourful lanterns inscribed with the words ‘hope’ and ‘amal’ in English and Arabic.