“No matter the situation, we should always have hope”

As told to Edmond Lo and Tegan Smyth. Translated by Tegan Smyth. André* has been living in Hong Kong since 2013, after fleeing sectarian violence in his home country, Togo. He left amid suspicious fires occurring at two major markets in Togo, leading to the arrest of opposition members without trial, ahead of the country’s parliamentary polls….

Living with a chronic illness in Hong Kong: Refugee Perspectives

As told to Tegan Smyth and Rivekie Ho. Sarah* arrived in Hong Kong as a foreign domestic helper. However, after falling sick with a serious illness, her contract of employment was cancelled and her employment agency bought tickets to send her home. After overstaying in Hong Kong to receive medical treatment, she is now living…

Legal Limbo, Mental Health & Faith: Intersections

As told to Shama Mashroor When discussing the lives of refugees, mental health is a factor that is often overlooked by policy-makers and individual citizens alike. What does it feel like to leave your home behind in search of a better one so that you can provide for your family, while also struggling with an…

Creating a life after trauma: building a future in Hong Kong

As told to Mhairi McLaughlin and Sophie Hines. Translation by Tegan Smyth. Laura and Maria*, are from Madagascar. They arrived in Hong Kong around a year ago, after fleeing forced marriages to men in Mainland China. This is their story (Part 2 of 2). See Part 1 here. And then you escaped to Hong Kong?…

Dreams of a life: single motherhood in asylum

As told to Tegan Smyth June*, from Indonesia, has lived in Hong Kong since 2006. She has a daughter, Emma that she is raising by herself. She spoke a few months after her original interview about her hopes and aspirations for her daughter. Alice, from Togo, is also raising her two children alone in Hong Kong….

Motherhood and living as an asylum seeker

As told to Dannie Higginbotham and Cynthia Chung June*, from Indonesia, has lived in Hong Kong since 2006 and is a former domestic helper seeking asylum in Hong Kong. Over beef rendang, June talks about her time as a helper, her daughter, and life as an asylum seeker. Can you tell us about yourself, anything…

Food, running and culture: one refugee’s story

As told to Hillary Leung and Tegan Smyth. Words by Tegan Smyth.  Joseph* is a refugee from a country in Africa that is currently embroiled in sectarian violence. He spoke to us about his daily life as a refugee as well as sharing a treasured recipe from home.   Could you tell us a little…

The waiting game: 16 years in Hong Kong as a refugee

As told to Leanne Ledgard. Words by Leanne Ledgard. Mahmoud* arrived in Hong Kong more than sixteen years ago, after fleeing persecution in his country. Despite all his children being born and raised in Hong Kong, each day is uncertain, as Mahmoud cannot work to provide for his family – and his children live as…