skip to main content
Story

World Refugee Day 2022: LCF X Worldwide FM

Dancers with dress
  • Written byLondon College of Fashion
  • Published date17 June 2022
Dancers with dress
Every person on this planet has a right to seek safety – whoever they are, wherever they come from and whenever they are forced to flee.

— UNHCR

To mark World Refugee Day 2022, we have been working with LCF’s Professor Helen Storey, on a collaboration with London based radio station Worldwide FM, to support a day of programming dedicated to honouring refugees across the world.

Each year on June 20, the world celebrates World Refugee Day and this year, the focus is on the right to seek safety. A recent UNHCR global trends report shared a shocking statistic that 1 in every 78 people on earth has been forced to flee, which means 1 in every 78 people on our planet are now displaced from their homes, further highlighting the importance of recognising and marking this day in solidarity with all displaced people.

women in an embrace with unhcr vest

It is also a chance for us to mark the next phase in Professor Storey's work as she embarks upon an expansion of her collaboration with the UNHCR.

After six years of working together with refugees of Za’atari Refugee Camp, on the Jordan/Syria border, Helen will travel to four African countries to create new bonds, new connections, and new creative collaborations.

This began with a scoping mission to Maratene Refugee Camp in Nampula, the only refugee settlement in Mozambique, in May 2022 and will continue to Malawi, Zimbabwe and Zambia in the coming months.

In a post this week on the Centre for Sustainable Fashion blog, Helen said:

“This comes at a time when war and what it means to flee for your life are now much closer to home – Ukraine makes our understanding of this kind of devastation real and makes turning away from the horror, complexity, and consequences of war, impossible.”

embroidery curtain on a structure

As part of our collaboration with Worldwide FM, Helen will be on the Erica McKoy show on Monday between 10am and 12pm talking about her work, Dress for our Time and how it has evolved over the past six years. On the show, we will also hear music from Mozambican musicians, recorded in camp, and about the important role that music holds for displaced people.

Along with this, we'll be launching a new film of 'the dress' featuring a performance with students from Wimbledon College of Arts, UAL and Psychonaut Theatre, and an original score composed by Sarathy Korwar, who was commissioned to create a piece of music as a personal response to the dress and performance.

On creating the music Sarathy told us:

I found the entire production incredibly powerful. It captures the movement across space and emotions really well and takes you on a real journey.

I took inspiration from the flow of the entire piece. The film follows a narrative yet stays rooted in a distinct emotional space throughout. I kept going back to fluid sounds, that moved between notes and glided, a bit like the movement of people.

I think it is vastly important to stand in solidarity with refugees across the world. To say that people and their situation is being seen understood and empathised with. A simple validation of people's existence in today's age goes a long way from the dehumanising experiences many refugees are subjected to on a daily.

unhcr tent dress performance

We have also commissioned a two hour show from Zaatari Radio a humanitarian collective working with war-affected communities around the world. Since 2018 they have been broadcasting radio from Zaatari Village, within transmission distance of the Civil War in Syria.

unhcr tent dress performance
We cannot ‘save’ other people and we should never imagine we can, instead we can finetune into reality as it presents itself and let it determine what needs expression, making, changing, inventing, or letting be, together.

— Professor Helen Storey

Tune into Worldwide FM from 10am on Monday to hear all of this, plus additional shows to mark this day. We hope that you will join us on the to honour this important day of recognition for all refugees across the world.