Zrinka described her work through Migrants Organise - providing a platform for migrants and refugees to connect, build common ground, grow their power and act for justice.

Zrinka Bralo, from Migrants Organise inspires with talk on inclusive communities

On 21st March 2019 the University hosted Zrinka Bralo, CEO Migrants Organise as part of the Individuality Speaker Series.

Zrinka is a refugee from Sarajevo, where she was a journalist and where she worked with leading war correspondents during the siege in the 90’s. She is a founder of Women on the Move Awards that celebrates achievement of migrant and refugee women and winner of the 2011 Voices of Courage Award by the Women’s Refugee Commission in New York. She served as a Commissioner on the Independent Asylum Commission, the most comprehensive review of the UK protection system.

Zrinka, in her talk, described her work through Migrants Organise - providing a platform for migrants and refugees to connect, build common ground, grow their power and act for justice. She spoke about the experiences of seeking asylum in the UK, living and campaigning through various immigration acts and the impact of proper legal advice around immigration.

Zrinka shared experiences on how organisations can create cultures of respect – ranging from engaging with those with different and challenging views to countering the drip effect of toxic messaging around immigration in media. The key to counter these is to give platform to voices that have been silenced or unheard, she says.  She emphasized how important it was to understand the significance of our values, identify our allies, have open and honest conversations and not be afraid of failure when initiating change.

The ‘Individuality Speaker Series’ brings high profile champions of equality, diversity and inclusivity to our campuses to share their experiences with students, staff and the community. This is an action from the Provost Commission which is taking steps to ensure that we are an open, diverse and safe community for all. 

Through this speaker series, the University of Exeter, want to share global best-practice but also to challenge the day-to-day conscious or unconscious bias we may exhibit as members of this community. Speakers will be chosen for the series based on the diversity of their experiences across various protected characteristics and their track-record for championing equality, diversity and inclusion, some especially within the South-West but also, across the globe. To know more or nominate speakers visit: https://www.exeter.ac.uk/speakout/campaigns/speakers/

Date: 22 March 2019

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