„Mediation is another word for FRIENDSHIP. Community Mediators provide friendship through many different forms.”
– INCLUDE ME project team
Refugee and migrants children create mural to promote unity, peace and friendship in Greece
Artists Achilleas Souras and Alice Pasquini join forces with UNICEF to raise awareness on the situation of refugee and migrant children in Greece
Meet Lola Gonzales Farrell
„I feel people are more welcoming in this community now. I think we’ve made a difference in how people see migrants. I’ve just had the tidy towns contact me to ask if people in my group can get involved. There’s also a lot of reaching out to include asylum seekers.„
Meet Lola Gonzales Farrell: Inclusion and integration mediator
- She moved to Co Leitrim, Ireland in March 2015
- She works in a charity shop in Carrick-on-Shannon, Ireland and is now its manager, doing really interesting work in sustainable fashion and other causes
- She manages a group of volunteers rather than paid staff
- Selected by the Immigrant Council of Ireland to participate in their Migrant Councillor Internship Scheme Migrant-Councillor Internship Scheme | Immigrant Council of Ireland
- She was recently shadowing Councillor Sean McGowan as part of the programme with Leitrim County Council
Role models in mediation for inclusion contribute to:
- Inspiring others to mingle, participate in social inclusion activities, to share knowledge, experiences
- Empowerment of socio-cultural communities and their members, and offer opportunities, for example accessing the job market
- Representation of diverse members of the community, important for peacebuilding cohesion and overall wellbeing
Mediators from different backgrounds assist in breaking down barriers around inclusion – by their actions, they are showing positive leadership and being positive role models, which paves the way for others in new communities.
Intercultural mediation actively impacts on different fields, among them: the economic (potential access to the job market), political (promoting access to public services and offering information about rights and responsibilities, among other elements) and social (contributing to enlarge the networks and relationships, visualizing newcomers and their contributions to the host societies, promoting positive models and new behaviours).
Want to become a mediator – start as a volunteer?
You need to COMMUNICATE your volunteering aims, look for host organisations and get in touch with them
Each organisation has its own rules that every volunteer must follow. You need to agree on what your COMMITMENT is, and do your best to stick to that
FOCUS: Volunteering can be a great experience for sharing cultures, and tradition, learning the language, developing new skills, and meeting people from all over the world
Role models matter
“I hope that Ro and I, as two black women from West Africa now in a shop in the West of Ireland, will inspire other people – especially non-Irish women – to go for it and not to be afraid. We’re always here to give support.”
𝗦𝗢𝗕𝗜𝗔 𝗦𝗔𝗔𝗗 – 𝗣𝗔𝗞𝗜𝗦𝗧𝗔𝗡 𝗠𝗘𝗘𝗧𝗦 𝗜𝗥𝗘𝗟𝗔𝗡𝗗 𝗔𝗥𝗧 𝗜𝗡𝗦𝗧𝗔𝗟𝗟𝗔𝗧𝗜𝗢𝗡
On Kilkenny Day Sobia’s beautiful art installation on Canal Square. This piece is decorated to represent the pride Pakistani truck drivers take in their vehicles using Sobia’s first Irish car as a canvas. Sobia has a Masters degree in printmaking and fine arts and has been based in Ireland for 4 years.
Source: KilkennyDay Facebook page
‘Truck Art’- The pride of Pakistan
Understand why Sobia’s art was an important mediation tool: read about truck art in Pakistan: https://en.dailypakistan.com.pk/03-May-2018/truck-art-the-pride-of-pakistan
As a role model through the arts, Sobia produced some positive effects. Can you think of:
- Who benefits from enjoying Pakistani art in the Irish community of Kilkenny?
- How do you imagine Pakistani communities in Ireland feel when seeing this example?
- Can you name the reasons why this action has enriched the lives of Kilkenny community?
- Why is this mediation too?