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November 27, 2019

A refugee written song from a songwriting project in Durham has inspired another in Northumberland.

Like a Butterfly’ which captures the hardship of leaving home amidst war and seeking sanctuary in the UK was written by Syrian refugees in Durham as part of an Arts Council funded community project. The song was performed alongside other original pieces the group had written.

So inspired by the performance, a visiting community of people seeking sanctuary in a small town in Northumberland decided to run their own songwriting group. Anne, one of the volunteers of the group, played the song from the CD in their weekly English classes which had a huge impact:

“I took them to a small room in the school and I played the song and there were tears streaming down their faces” (Anne)   

The song, which has been professionally recorded by singer-songwriter Sam Slatcher, featuring the Sanctuary Seekers Choir chants “These new streets I walk and breathe have set me free. This city I came to offered Sanctuary”    

One of the sanctuary seekers, Sabina, expressed “When I first heard it I cried. It’s about me – I left home, work and everything. We learnt this song in our English class, and it’s helped me learn new words. I was singing it at home and my daughter asked what is this song you’re singing and I told her it’s a very beautiful song we learnt”

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