Suspended Lives

“When you are a refugee there is something you pay, and you pay this from your life.”

These are the words of one of the protagonists of Suspended Lives, a video documentary co-produced by JRS Malta and Andrew Galea Debono centred around the lives of forced migrants in Malta, which tells -- in their own words -- of the hardships they face.

The documentary tells seven stories of migrants who arrived in Malta during the past years: four men who arrived alone, a woman and her minor son, and a couple and their children.

All, apart from one, arrived in Malta by boat and all applied for asylum. Although not all were granted protection immediately, by the time the filming was concluded all had been granted some form of protection or permission to stay in Malta. What emerged from the interviews that were conducted was more than just information. It was an awakening that showed the deep scars which asylum seekers carry all throughout their journey.

The final product reveals the realities, hopes, fears and hardships that asylum seekers and forced migrants face every day.

In 2011, the documentary was the focus of an awareness-raising campaign highlighting the hardships faced by asylum seekers and forced migrants in Malta. During this campaign, which came to an end on World Refugee Day (20 June) 2011, Jesuit Refugee Service Malta held monthly public screenings at St James Cavalier, Valletta, and at the University Chaplaincy, Msida.

Although the campaign officially came to an end with the last screening, JRS Malta will continue to use the documentary as an advocacy tool, particularly in its Schools Outreach Programme. Enquiries for a private screening from Interested organisations, government departments/offices and other communities are welcome.

For more information contact us.

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