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Flight for life

The Stories of The Refugees of Today

The portraits and personal stories displayed on this page are part of the exhibition “Flight for Life” at Bornholm’s Museum (DK). The exhibition is made in collaboration with the National Museum of Denmark and can be visited at Bornholm’s Museum from February 2nd until July 31st 2018.


At the exhibition visitors walk in the footsteps of refugees - from their first decision to flee their country of origin, to the dangerous journey across the Mediterranean Sea, until their arrival in e.g. Denmark.

As part of the exhibition, photographer and founder of Refugee.Today, Martin Thaulow exhibits a number of his portraits of refugees living on the island of Bornholm. Through his portraits he seeks to show a different perspective to the mass term ‘refugee’ and portray each human as an individual person with a name, a face and a story. Read the unique stories below.

  • Yara's story
    20/03/2018 - Ida Brink 0 Comments
    Yara's story

    “When you experience war, you kind of feel you will die soon. You never know whether you will survive or not. When there are no bombs for a couple of hours, you always have the feeling that it will come back soon” Yara explains about having lived in a war zone.

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  • Salem's story
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    Salem's story

    Salem remembers the war in Syria. Most of all the sounds.
    He and his parents fled from Damaskus to Tripoli and from there they sailed towards the Italian cost in an old fishing ship, packed with 1.500 other refugees.

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  • Sherin's story
    20/03/2018 - Ida Brink 0 Comments
    Sherin's story

    Every morning, Sherin wakes up in fear of getting the news that her mother and four siblings who are still living in Syria are no longer alive. “It feels like the war will never end” she says.

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  • Sham's story
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    Sham's story

    Sham’s mother, Sherin, explains about the war’s impact on the family: “The hardest is not the war itself, but the consequences. To be split up as a family”.

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  • Parvin's story
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    Parvin's story

    Parvin fled Iran with her husband Jalil and their two children, Pouya and Sama, because the Iranian police were searching for Jalil. The family arrived in Denmark in June 2015 and still live at an asylum center. They have had their application for asylum denied, but are still hoping to get a residence permit.

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  • Sawsan's story
    20/03/2018 - Ida Brink 0 Comments
    Sawsan's story

    Sawsan and her husband originally lived in Jobar, the first district in Damascus that got bombed in 2012. She explains that 20-50 bombs are still being thrown in the area on a daily basis. Her brother, Monzer, died in a bomb attack in 2014, only 24 years old.

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  • Ramazan's story
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    Ramazan's story

    Ramazan, his wife and children have not been united as a family for four years. At the moment, he is waiting for a decision in the Danish asylum system.

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  • Ghulam's story
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    Ghulam's story

    Since May 2016 Ghulam and his son Ramazan have lived at asylum centers in Denmark, waiting for a decision on their application for asylum.

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  • Evin's story
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    Evin's story

    Evin and her family came to Denmark in August 2014. Her parents originally lived in Jobar, the first area in Damascus to be bombed in 2012. Their house and a large part of Jobar have been left in ruins a long time ago.

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  • Maya's story
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    Maya's story

    Maya’s misses her grandparents who are still living in Syria. She has not seen them for many years, only online when the network connection allows it. 

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  • Hebba's story
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    Hebba's story

    Hebba, Wisam and their daughter Jelnar and son Jalal today live at an asylum center. Their application for asylum has been denied and they have waited for almost a year to have their case reassessed by the Danish Refugee Board.

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  • Emad's story
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    Emad's story

    “In Syria I have taken an education. I am well educated. I had a job. When I think of myself, it is as if I’ve built a really tall building and from one day to the other it collapsed. I lost it all”.

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  • Wael's story
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    Wael's story

    Wael came to Denmark in 2013. His parents still live in Aleppo, where they work as doctors. They want to go away, but cannot afford to escape. “I miss my parents. Every single day I fear for their lives. When they do not answer, I am so afraid that something has happened to them”.

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  • Ayman's story
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    Ayman's story

    Ayman was born in the Palestinian refugee camp Khan Al-Sheh near Damascus. When the war broke out in Syria he and his family were forced to flee. Today they live on Bornholm: “We were born as refugees and have been refugees throughout our lives. Bornholm is a safe place and we are very, very happy to live here”.

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  • Jalil's story
    20/03/2018 - Ida Brink 0 Comments
    Jalil's story

    Jalil fled Iran because he had participated in a political demonstration in the city of Mahabad. When the Iranian police started looking for Jalil in order to imprison him, he took his family and fled to a nearby city. They managed to cross the border between Turkey and Italy and finally to reach Denmark. The family now lives at an asylum center and are waiting for their asylum application to be reassessed. 

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