Stories of migration and integration: Iftar for Refugees at the Divan
On May 23, the Arabic Cultural House – The Divan in Berlin opened its doors to members of the refugee community and representatives of refugee organizations to celebrate Ramadan and take the opportunity to reflect on the importance of exchanges between cultures and built a stronger and integrated community in the process.
People from different nationalities and ages sat together in the garden of The Divan in a communal atmosphere, waiting to break the fast and consume the Iftar together. The evening was opened by 2nd Secretary Mr. Abdullah Bin Rashid Al Khalifah, thanking those present for coming to share this important part of the day together.
Then, Laura El-Khatib, Commissioner of the District of Berlin Steglitz-Zehlendorf for Integration and Migration, also expressed her gratitude to participants for attending and highlighted the importance of moments like Iftar for bringing people closer together, offering an opportunity to get to know each other and bridge differences.
Following Ms. El-Khatib´s speech, Ms. Rachel Clarke and Ihab Sukkariya, a refugee from Damascus, Syria, recited poems and stories about giving generously during Ramadan and finding peace again among the hardships of war and migration.
After the sun had set, the Iftar began by consuming sweet dates in preparation for the meal to follow. The Divan offered to its guests a generous buffet of humus, bread, tender meats and sugary desserts. As the sun set completely behind the white walls of the Divan and people finished their meals all one could hear was the gentle murmur of people in lively conversation.
The evening came to an end sipping cups of sweet chai and spiced tea and exchanging goodbyes as the guests left satiated with the exquisit food and inspired by the richness of stories and experiences.