UNHCR Albania joins UN agencies in celebrating United Nations Week
31 October 2022
UN Week 2022
As of October 24th, UNHCR Albania joined other UN agencies and the Government of Albania in celebrating United Nations Week by hosting a number of activities all across Albania. At a time when forced displacement around the world is at an all-time high, the activities provided space to honor the strength and courage of refugees while also encouraging public awareness.
On October 24, the UNHCR team in Albania set up an information tent at Skanderbeg Square in Tirana. People from various walks of life stopped by the tent, asking the team about refugees and the role of the UNHCR while also benefiting from the information and visibility items
On October 28, UNHCR continued with the screening of a documentary film in Durres' main square. The film “Torn” captured the first-hand experience of a Syrian refugee who fled his home in search of safety. Throughout his journey, the protagonist crosses paths with UNHCR goodwill Ambassador Alessandro Gassmann, poets, writers, musicians, playwrights, actors, sculptures, directors, and painters as well as humanitarians working with UN agencies in Jordan and Lebanon. After almost twelve years,Syria remains the world’s largest refugee crisis with more than 6.8 million Syrians forced to flee their country since 2011.
On October 28, 2022, a photography exhibition "The Dreams We Carry" portraying resilience and aspirations of refugees was launched in the Visual Art Gallery "Nikolet Vasia" in Durres, in an event hosted by Toshitsuki Kawauchi, UNHCR Representative in Albania, and Monsignor Arjan Dodaj, President of Caritas Albania.
Renuar Locaj's photographs reveal the people and stories behind the statistics. They bear witness to refugees' lived experiences, having left everything behind except their hopes and dreams for a safer future. Toshitsuki Kawauchi, UNHCR Representative in Albania, said at the event, “Those who have been forced to flee bring with them their cultures, their unique experiences and their hope - all of which may make any community stronger and more vibrant”.
The opening ceremony enjoyed participation of Andi Mahila, Deputy Minister of Interior; Silvana Banushi, General Director on Development for Migration and Asylum; Emiljan Jani, Prefect of Durres; Emiriana Sako, the Mayor of Durres; Fiona McCluney, UN Resident Coordinator in Albania along with residents of the Durres municipality, local government representatives, civil society members including faith-based organizations, staff of UNHCR and UN agencies in Albania.