What has Promise of Home done so far?
Phase 1 of Promise of Home started in 2020 with a group of roughly 20 participants, mostly high school immigrant students. The participants met with the PoH team early that year in a series of workshops to help the students think and share and develop their stories. In the end, 11 students developed their stories, and by the summer they chose how they wanted to share it with the community, whether through poetry, drawings, spoken word, etc. The pandemic delayed the workshops and limited the way the stories were shared to mostly spoken presentations and recitals.
However, the team managed to record the participants at various locations throughout the city and posted them online. A virtual event was organized to show these recordings to the community and a community conversation is planned to hear from other Fredericton residents about what they gathered from the stories.
What is Promise of Home doing now?
Promise of Home is entering Phase 2, and this time, immigrants of ages 16 and higher who live in Fredericton are invited to become storytellers.
Although the effects of the pandemic are still present, the team has learned how to work with the participants in safe, convenient formats, whether in open public spaces or virtually through online video conferencing. The PoH team does their best to help new participants develop their stories at a time in a format that is most convenient to them.
The stories can be done in any language, and translation of the participants choice and can be provided through local translators if requested. More importantly, the stories can be about anything that the storyteller wishes to share, as long as it does not promote violence or hatred. You can be thankful, you can be critical, and you can express anything that helps people understand what you are going through as a new resident in this city.