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New Challenges New Cultures New Opportunities New Friends New Memories New Adventures New Dreams

Scotland Our New Home Glasgow’s New Arrivals Magazine 2018

Welcome to our zine! Scotland Our New Home is a magazine for Glasgow’s New Arrivals. It was created by a group of young people. We wanted to share our experiences and advice with other young people arriving in Glasgow, but we hope there is something interesting or useful for everyone, including YOU! We are New Young Peers Scotland (NYPS); a group of young people from all over the world who have been learning together how to make Glasgow a better home for us, and for other young people. We are all aged between 16 & 25 years old, and each of us arrived in Glasgow, without family, seeking Asylum. Each of us have faced challenges and difficulties to be where we are today. We have learned how to share knowledge and skills learned from these experiences with each other. Our plan is to continue sharing this with future unaccompanied young people arriving in Glasgow. We speak a lot of languages between us, but we are now all communicating in English - and the group really helps us develop that skill, and so many others! That is why we have found peer mentoring such a fantastic way to settle and grow in this new city. Glasgow is a really friendly place, but like anywhere there can be times when you feel alone, worried, and maybe even helpless. Our advice is to get involved in groups where you feel safe and supported. We’ll be sharing some places that we love, and our top tips for great places to go. We hope you find this zine helpful, and it makes you feel hopeful and happy about your future in Glorious Glasgow! NYPS is supported by Lorraine Ward, Social Worker GCHSCP, Lyn Ma, Senior ESOL lecturer at Anniesland Clyde College and Vicki Burns, Y peer Mentoring Co-ordinator at Y People. These partners have co-founded, facilitated and developed the peer mentoring programme which has enabled these young people to find their voice and feel confident enough to share their knowledge, skills and aspirations with others.


Photo: Jon Mould, CC, 2018

Photo: NYPS, 2017

Glasgow and the New Arrivals Map Welcome to Glasgow! We hope you enjoy life here as much as we do! It can be difficult to find your way around at first, but people are friendly and if you know the address you are going to someone can usually help you find your way. Keep your eyes open for these symbols in the zine. They will help you if you want to find an organisation or place on the digital map we have developed - with a lot of help from Nahom Ghebrehiwet from Freedom From Torture.




Eat Out



Community Meal

Food Shop

Free Toilet

Pharmacy Post Office Sikh Space

Community Hospital/ Space Clinic

Islamic Space

Support Services

Learning Centre

Learning Centre

Soup Kitchen

Christian Space

You can use your phone to scan the QR code to the righ. Some phones will scan straight from the camera, for some older phones you might need to download an app. Hold your camera over the image and the link will give you access to the digital New Arrivals Map. If you do not have access to a smart phone you can find a link to this map via www.issuu.com/megazineglasgow. There are far more things to know about this fair city than we could ever share within the pages of this magazine, or on our map. We’ve included just a few of our favourites, but please be aware there are many, many more places for you to discover and enjoy!


If you have an emergency where you need the Police, Ambulance or Fire Service dial 999 OR 112 Photo: NYPS, 2018

Here’s to your Health!

In a nut shell

Like all Scottish residents, Asylum seekers & Refugees have a right to free health services & dentists.

Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland, and the 3rd biggest in the UK. Glasgow is a city based within a great area of smaller towns. In the Greater Glasgow area there are 1.2 million residents, but only around 600,000 of them live in the City of Glasgow. People from all corners of the world call this city home.

If you need something for a minor issue you can talk to the pharmacist at your local chemist.

Getting Around There are a few ways to travel around Glasgow, but you can get to pretty much anywhere via the bus, train or subway. You can check which is best on www.travelinescotland.com (app available) Bus www.firstgroup.com/greater-glasgow www.mcgillsbuses.com Train www.thetrainline.co.uk (app available) Subway www.spt.co.uk/subway There are a number of charities which help New Arrivals access free or cheap bicycles to help getting around the city, so ask about this at your local integration network. www.cycle-route.com www.cyclestreets.net


For General Practice (GP) Doctors and Dentists visit www.nhs.uk and search via your postcode. The surgery will ask for your postcode when you register to make sure you live in the area. You can get sexual health services & contraceptive advice at the Sandyford www.sandyford.org. This includes emergency advice and treatment - and interpreters are available. There are a variety of specialised projects you can be referred to for excellent support around traumatic experiences. or to support you with your emotional or mental well being. Your Social Worker, Doctor, or any worker at these organisations will be able to give you more information (and referrals) for fantastic organisations/ projects like Freedom From Torture, Anchor, Assist, and many more.

Dress for the Weather! Glasgow sees more than it’s fair share of rain - sometimes 170 days of the year!! It can be difficult to get used to at first but you just need to be prepared, and always bring a brolly (umbrella)!

Culture Vultures!

Photo: NYPS, 2017

Hitting the Shops! Check out p18 for our favourite places to buy food items. However when it comes to buying clothes and household items... PRIMARK - Cheap and cheerful, you can get some great bargains on new clothing and other items. Charity Shops - There aren’t many charity shops in the city centre, but if you head out of the centre you can find amazing second hand clothing, books, and many other items at a brilliant price! Many charity shops sell second hand furniture too! Some of our favourites are Oxfam, Barnardos, Cancer Research, and the British Heart Foundation. A special mention for The Magpie’s Eye & the Magpie’s Nest on Burleigh Street in Govan. Polmadie Carboot Sale (Saturday mornings) Jessie Street, Glasgow G42 0PG Prices can get really low when people are selling their old things from car boots! An amazing variety, but there are some very competitive shoppers, so get there early and don’t be afraid to bargain for the best price! There is another popular carboot sale in Blochairn, but Polmadie is the only carboot sale under a roof - very useful in the rain! The Barras Market Gallowgate, Glasgow G1 5AX A historic and interesting weekend market to wander around. www.glasgow-barrowland.com/market/barras.htm www.gumtree.com/glasgow A great way to pick up cheap items (and even free things!) in Glasgow, but always be careful when you are arranging to collect things from people.

Did we mention that pretty much all of Glasgow’s museums and galleries are free? And they host lots of different events through out the year for festivals and holidays. So why not check out some of Glasgow’s top FREE cultural spots? Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum Argyle Street, Glasgow G3 8AG Amazing huge historic building, huge collection of Art, animals. ✓ The Lighthouse 11 Mitchell Lane, Glasgow, G1 3NU Best View in Glasgow? Maybe - head up to the top and let us know! Charles Rennie Mackintosh exhibition and ✓ lots of other beautiful things to look at.✓ Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA) Royal Exchange Square, Glasgow G1 3AH Amazing modern art, famous Glasgow landmark ( Duke of Wellington with traffic cone crown), library with seats to take a welcome rest in the city centre.✓

* It’s worth knowing that you can use public toilets for free in all libraries, museums, and art galleries, and they usually have free WIFI too! Library membership is free, and allows access to computers.

Looking for something to do? www.glasgowlife.org.uk www.theskinny.co.uk www.whatsonglasgow.co.uk www.wow247.co.uk www.facebook.com 4

Ruham Ruham is a young Somali woman who has lived in Glasgow for one year. She is strong, generous, and her selflessness makes her go through thick and thin for others. Her beautiful spirit makes you feel like you are in your mum’s house [for real!] She has a gorgeous smile and the loveliest eyes which always see the best in people. Ruham is always down for a good laugh, a good movie, and she’s great fun to be around. Ruham likes keeping herself as busy as possible, and loves volunteering in peer mentoring to help other new young people learn what it is like to live here; far away from their families and comfort zones. Ruham’s top tip for new arrivals to Glasgow is to engage in a lot of things, and keep busy and occupied.

Flo Flo is a 19 year old with a beautiful face,and an even more beautiful heart. She has achieved a lot in her one year in Scotland, and loves living in Glasgow. Flo is studying hard at Anniesland College, and hopes to become a successful business manager. She has a lot of interests, and loves swimming and basketball, but she also puts a lot of her energy and time into volunteering. Flo really cares about helping other young people settling in Glasgow. She can make anyone and everyone feel comfortable and ease with her genuine smile and kindness.

Krongo Krongo is a 23 year old caring guy with a great sense of humour. He is very supportive and friendly. Krongo arrived from Sudan 3 years ago, and has spent lots of time volunteering and helping others since. He volunteers with New Young Peers Scotland (NYPS) and the Youth Community Support Agency. Krongo is extremely passionate about studying Accountancy and loves playing football and hitting the gym [watch out ladies!] Krongo hopes participating in NYPS will help other young people like him, and allow him to learn new skills at the same time.

Mohamad Mohamad is from Syria. He has been here just over I year. He is kind, funny and friendly and is a good cook. He says he is also handsome!

Mahy Mahy is a beautiful and intelligent young woman who loves learning new things, and is always pushing her boundaries.She really cares about helping other people who are lonely, and gently encouraging them to be the best versions of themselves; with her generosity, kindness, and often some really delicious homemade food from somewhere around the world. When she isn’t nurturing others through cooking and peer mentoring, Mahy loves maths, and reading by the riverside - on the rare days of Scottish sunshine*. She’d recommend the river as a nice place to go in the Summer to feel calm. *These are very rare, so enjoy them when they come along!



New Youn Peer Scot

ng rs tland

XX XX, you have to meet her in order to believe how beautiful human beings really can be! She has so much energy and is always smiling! She loves shaking her bahookie [backside!] and never, ever says no to chocolate. XX loves meeting new people, and always does her best to make them feel comfortable and welcome. Her huge heart and caring spirit has led to her volunteering for a lot of different places, and she is always a great help because she loves learning new things and passing on skills to others.

Alee Alee is an inspiring 24 year old who arrived from Pakistan 7 years ago. He spends the ma jority of his time helping others and volunteering with numerous organisations, and is currently a member of the board of directors for the Scottish Refugee Council. He devotes a lot of his time campaigning for access to higher education for Asylum seeking children, and is currently working on a national level policy to make this happen. In between all of this Alee also volunteers with NYPS, and devotes all of his skills and talents in any way he can. He is also a mechanical engineer and wants to pursue his career in the automotive industry and obtain his Phd. In his spare time Alee loves playing cricket and has been the captain of his club for 2 years.

Mary Mary is one of the most mature and beautiful souls that anyone would be lucky to meet, and people often feel blessed and humbled by her hard-working ways and nurturing spirit. She makes people feel at home with the way she greets them - always smiling, and usually with some kind of delicious, freshly-prepared mediterranean dish. Mary brings her creativity, intelligence, and enormous heart to her participation in the mentoring group.

Hamid Hamid is an artist. He has been here for 3 years and is from Iran. He enjoys drumming and wants to be architect. He really wants to help other people. He recently wore a kilt and looked amazing!

Hermon Hermon is a beautiful-hearted 17 year old who arrived in Glasgow one year ago from Eritrea. He’s extremely genuine, friendly and loves to make people laugh. He loves staying active in the gym, as well as being a seriously keen cyclist. Currently, he is studying at college as well as volunteering with New Young Peer Mentors. His hope over this time is to help other young people as much as he can as well as developing himself - both mentally and physically. Hermon wants to use this opportunity to make new friends as well as strengthen his bonds with old ones. He is the definition of a good guy to be around.


“When I first arrived here, my social worker connected me with the Scottish Guardianship Service - which I found really helpful. They help young people, who arrive in Glasgow under 18 years old, with the asylum seeking process. Your Guardian takes responsibility in every step with the Home Office and your Lawyer. The good thing with this organisation is that there is a group at night twice a month, with all the young people who are with them, and they have activities with lots of fun in them. I have been going to the since I arrived in Glasgow and I am enjoying it.” Ruham

Tell me about when you arrived in Scotland An agent left me in Glasgow and I found a police station. I remember talking to the policemen but we both couldn’t understand each other. I was put in a room and left for a very long time. No interpreter was being used to talk to me. The police took me in a car to somewhere else but no-one explained where I was being taken to, I was very fearful of men due to my previous experience so I was terrified that the policemen were taking me somewhere to be killed. What have you found helpful since you arrived in Scotland? Having friendships, opportunities and activities to do. The importance of having good social networks. When you live in Glasgow you can meet lots of people and live with other young people, going to college, guardianship participation group and our peer-mentoring group helps you meet other young people like you. What were some of the difficulties/ barriers you faced? I had to tell my story again and again, people asked me the same questions and I wondered why I had to repeat my story to so many professionals. That was really hard. Also I had a very bad experience with an interpreter, they shouted at me and I couldn’t do anything. How does waiting for a decision from the Home Office make you feel? I feel anxious and worried and like I am just waiting and waiting. I was so scared that I might be returned and I had sleepless and nights and nightmare about what might happen to me. -Ruham The Scottish Guardianship Service is run in partnership between Scottish Refugee Council and Aberlour Child Care Trust.

7 Photo: Alpha, CC, 2018

“Women refugees overwhelmingly come from countries where their rights have been severely restricted. They often lack the language skills and self-confidence to cope independently in an unfamiliar new environment. - British Red Cross

Women across the world face a range of special challenges in their lives that are unique to their situations. For female refugees these challenges intensify and often their find their safety compromised and in unfamiliar surroundings with little or no support. The UN acknowledges that “refugee women areRed more affected by violence Britih Cross than any other women’s population in the world”, and that much more needs to be done surrounding the protection and rights of women refugees. In scotland there are a range of organisations that are working to empower female refugees to learn language skills, access education and training, and to build new lives with support, companionship and stability. These organisations also offer support with issues such as domestic and sexual violence, legal rights and day to day practical and emotional support. “JustRight for Refugee Women aims to improve access to justice for, and increase protection of, refugee and migrant women and girls in Scotland who have been affected by violence. We will provide specialist, early and targeted legal casework to individuals in the fields of asylum and immigration law and other relevant legal matters, provide advice to individuals and professionals through specialist advice lines and legal surgeries, and will share expertise at a national and international level.”

www.justrightscotland.org.uk www.redcross.org.uk www.refugeewomen.co.uk www.amnesty.org.uk www.scottishrefugeecouncil.org.uk/rwsg


Scotland, my new home. I like the countryside. I lived in the countryside and I was born in the countryside. When I was a child In Sudan we had horses, cows, sheep and goats. My family were farmers and my mother and my brothers and sisters cared for the animals. We had milk from our cows and goats. We sold our animals at the market sometimes. I rode one of our horses and I loved riding. Our land in Autumn was green, the earth was green, the trees were green and the air was fresh. I felt free and peaceful when I was a child. When I came to Scotland, 2 years ago I remember climbing my first Scottish mountain. I felt like I was at home. It was really beautiful. Then I saw Oban, the mountains and the sea, it was summer and thought it was different than my country in summer it is very wet but it was just as beautiful. I went to Loch Lomond it is close to Glasgow, it is an amazing place to visit. You can go by boat across the Loch. My favourite place is Allanton House, in Dumfries. For me this is the most special place. I went in November with all the other peer-mentors. While we were there we worked in the garden, we chopped logs and used them to make a bonfire. This really reminded me of home in Sudan. We had no electricity and we would make a bonfire outside with our animals, sit, talk, eat and boil our milk over the fire to drink. At Allanton I could feel like I was at home again, I saw the moon and the stars, so many stars that I never see in the city. My memories of being a child came back to me, I wished I could be that child again and be together with my family. Although I felt sad I also felt happy. I was with my friends in this new place and we were together. For me Scotland is my new home. I was lonely but now I have friends who are like my new family. I want other young people who come to Scotland to have that too. Krongo


“YCSA is the most important place I found during my time in Glasgow. They helped me to find out about a lot of things which I didn’t know before, They took us outside Glasgow many times to show us what Scotland looks like and they gave us an opportunity to be a volunteer to help other young people who came here new to Scotland. We could explain how things worked here. Also they hired a pitch where we could play football and improve our football skills every week.” -Krongo The YCSA (Youth Community Support Agency) provides holistic support and services to young people in need of protection. They can identify your

Dear Green Place

needs and provide cultural and emotional support. www.ycsa.org.uk

Glasgow is famed for it’s parks and it has many to offer. Glasgow’s name actually means ‘dear green place’. On public holidays and during the summer they are a hive of activity! Just a few of our Favourite Parks in Glasgow Pollok Park - Beautiful, huge, and they have highland cows! Queens Park - A beautiful park, with a glasshouse with sub-tropical plants and ponds, plus birds, and a reptile house. Glasgow Green - Great for playing football, and home to some amazing play parks, the beautiful Winter Gardens glasshouse and the People’s Palace Museum. The Botanic Gardens - A fantastic place for a picnic in the west end of Glasgow (with yet more beautiful glass houses!) Kelvingrove Park - Considered by many to be the jewel in the crown of Glasgow’s green spaces, this large park has fantastic views of Glasgow University and the nearby (and fantastic) Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum.

Photo: A.Gordon,2018


Your Human Rights! Every person in the UK and in Scotland has human rights. It doesn’t matter which country you come from, how old you are, the colour of your skin, your ethnicity, your gender, your sexuality or your political views – we all have them and we should all be treated equally As young people who have recently arrived here in Scotland, we’re going to tell you about some of your rights. We want to make sure that you know about them and that you aren’t afraid to ask for them! “Best Interests” rule - adults here have to do what is best for you. This is called the “best interests” rule. For example, if you have an adult looking after you like a social worker or someone where you live, they need to make sure that you are kept safe and that you have everything you need to feel protected. This includes giving you money to support yourself as well. Right to an opinion - you have a right to make your opinion heard and be taken seriously. This means that if a decision is being made about how to best help you, e.g. where you should live, then the adults making that decision need to ask your opinion on it and listen to you! Don’t be afraid to say no to adults if you aren’t happy with a decision. They might not always be able to give you exactly what you want, but they still need to listen; so don’t be afraid to speak up! Really important – if you don’t speakEnglish, you have the right to an interpreter to help you express yourself.


If you don’t understand what adults are telling you, you can ask for an interpreter to help and they need to give you one! Right to life and not be harmed - this is really important. You might be here to claim asylum because it is too dangerous for you to stay and live in your own country. If you and your lawyer can explain to the government here (the Home Office) why it is too dangerous back in your country, then the Home Office need to let you live here in safety. Also, while you live here in Scotland, you have a right to be protected and kept safe. This means that if you are ever threatened or hurt, or someone tries to exploit you, then you can tell the authorities and they will stop it and help you. The police here in Scotland have to be nice; if they’re not then please tell someone! Right to liberty – while you’re here in Scotland you aren’t allowed to be detained unless you’ve committed a serious crime (which we hope you won’t!). In particular, you can’t be detained just because you’ve claimed asylum. Right to family – if you’ve been separated from your family to get here, you have the right to ask for the authorities to try and find them. If they are found or you know where they are, you can ask to be reunited with them. You can also ask the authorities to not look for them in case it would be dangerous for your family. Right to education - here in Scotland you can either go to school or go to college. If you don’t speak much English, one of the first things you can

do is study to learn English. After that, you can go on to choose different subjects. Make sure that you ask for this – it’s fun! Right to religion – in Scotland there are lots of different religions. You are free to practice your religion and adults need to make sure you are able to do so. This means that you can ask for help to go to the Church, Mosque, Pagoda, Synagogue or wherever you would like to go. You also have the freedom to change your religion or to not be religious at all. It’s your choice! Right to play – lastly, you have the right to have fun in the way you want to. Nobody likes being bored, so if you want to play sport, or go to the gym, or join clubs or read books – just ask! These are the key rights you have here, but there are loads more! You can ask your teacher, lawyer, Guardian, social worker or anyone else to give you more information on these! Your Lawyer When you arrive in Scotland, one of the first people you will be introduced to is a lawyer. A lawyer is a person that uses the rules and laws in the UK to help you get things that you need and want. For example, if you are claiming asylum in the UK then they will help you do this. We’re going to tell you some things that are good for you to know before you meet your lawyer for the first time. 1. Your lawyer is an independent person – this means that they don’t work for the Home Office, the Police, social work, or anyone else. In fact, the only person a lawyer works for is you! So you don’t need to be scared of meeting your lawyer. 2. You should be comfortable with your lawyer and you should be able to trust them. If you aren’t comfortable with them, you have the right to change your lawyer. Sometimes it isn’t a good idea to change at a particular time, but your social worker or Guardian can help you with this decision. 3. The things you tell your lawyer are confidential. This means that the things you discuss with your lawyer in meetings cannot be told to anyone else without your permission. If your lawyer told someone about what you talked about without your permission, then they can lose their job. This means that you can trust your lawyer and you can tell them anything without worrying about other people finding out. Importantly, this rule of confidentiality applies to the interpreter being used as well (we talk about that below). 4. The way a lawyer works is that you tell them what you need and want and they advise you on how best to get it. This means that you are actually in charge of them! You are called their “client”. Your lawyer should give you information on what rights you have and how to make them

happen, e.g. getting into school or college. They should also explain to you about what exactly “asylum” means and what the process of claiming asylum looks like. They will be your voice in the asylum process and will speak to the Home Office for you (apart from during interviews). 5. Your lawyer will have to ask you about what happened in your past in order to understand why it is too dangerous for you to live in your country, and why you need protection here. We know this can be hard and scary, but your lawyer should support you do this. It’s really important you tell them the truth so that they can use the rules and laws to help you. Remember that you can tell them things that you haven’t told anyone else – they cannot share that information without your consent! 6. If English isn’t your first language then you should always have an interpreter there for your meetings with your lawyer. This is your right. You can even request specific interpreters that you’ve used before and you like! You are also allowed to have someone you trust (like your Guardian or social worker) attend lawyer meetings to support you. This can help you feel strong to tell your story. 7. Finally, don’t be afraid to ask your lawyer lots of questions – there is no such thing as a silly question! It’s their job to help you and make sure you understand everything you need to get protection here, be safe and have your human rights. Written by Andy Sirel, JustRight for Refugee Children, JustRight Scotland. www.justrightscotland.org.uk


Out in the cold 13

In 2014, I was a young girl who left my country leaving everything behind. I had no idea of what the future had in store for me: a world with no one to turn to. I now realise that every small detail of my life would be different, things as simple as talking about my day to someone would soon be long gone and almost forgotten. I did not sense that I was lonely for a couple of days; it is something that bulged from the smooth edge of each day like a tumour blooming beneath skin. I guess I was distracted back then by the new environment and cold weather. Feeling lonely is quite an invisible catastrophe as you never know when it will happen. It was hard to think that until a few months before I had a mass of friends who used to fill my room with deafening noise. And now, I had none: it was barely believable that I could hear the floors of my house creak if I made any small movements. “A friend in need is a friend indeed�: someone who will be there for you no matter how strong the storm is, someone who is willing to face it with you. Their presence gives you an opportunity to realise who your true friends

are. Now I realise that a friend is a particular person who enters your life out of nowhere and suddenly you care about their wellbeing. You love them for who they are and you wouldn’t change a thing about them. This was clear to me in January 2014. My support worker was due to arrive that day at 3:45pm but, as I had no way of telling the time due to lack of a clock, I was told to keep “looking outside” and when it “got dark”, it would be approaching my appointment time. I was looking forward to meeting her, but I knew we would never be friends. She could only be a ‘support giver’ and I, ‘support receiver’, as you are not meant to be friends with people you work with as “it interfered with the type of support provided”. How I wished the people who made those rules had thought about people like me, completely friendless and lonely. No one will ever understand the frustration of not knowing the time unless it has happened to you. Looking back now it makes me wonder how many people go through this. You have days where you don’t know the time or even the day of the week just because it is in a language you simply can’t understand. A friend was needed to make it seem less miserable but without one it was impossible to not feel really lonely. It now makes me wonder how, in a blink of an eye, days melt into nights with friends around and every micro second that passes without them feels like a loss. “It gets dark early in winter” my interpreter assured me as I was thinking of a way to count how many minutes I had to wait. After a few seconds counting, I lost track. It now makes me wonder, isn’t it strange how we rely on time to divide our day? It organises your schedule and no matter how tight it is, a friend always fits somewhere- the snap-chat at the end of a busy college day; those endless calls talking and laughing about exactly the same thing as yesterday; the weekend rendezvous; the Sunday night pick-me up are some of the things that keep us going as we look forward to the replies and company friends provide every day. My flat was absolutely freezing. I had layers of clothes on but I was cold within and all I prayed for was the sun. I didn’t know how to use the heaters. I looked outside my window and for a minute I thought I was dreaming…I saw beautiful flakes of snow landing on the ground. For the very first time in my life. The only thing between us was the window. It was not in a movie or someone’s story, it was now in front of me and it was going to start being in my story. I laughed so hard that I ended up crying. All I wanted to do was to stretch my hands so I could touch it, stand in it, smell it and enjoy its

beauty! But what I really wished for was someone to share the joy it had introduced to my life-a snow friend, just like in the movie when a young child is befriended and taken away on a magical journey. I desperately needed that journey as well. I felt so unloved and very lonely. This was a very special moment for me. I wanted to enjoy every second of it. However, after some minutes, I realised I wasn’t happy at all and the thought of never being happy again killed my joyous reverie. This was the time I needed a friend, to share this moment with and create sweet and bitter memories together in the great milestones of life. At that point I realised that whatever I achieved in life would mean nothing if I had nobody to share it with. I just couldn’t simply understand why it meant so much when someone is out of your life compared to when they walk in. I couldn’t explain it but reflecting now it is clear I was so sad because I felt so lonely. I had no one and I was completely on my own. There was no one to turn to, someone to make me happy or sad. It was just an empty space and the world seemed so dead. No matter what age or gender we are, we always need someone to rely on. Had I realised the day I said goodbye to my friends was the last time I was going to ever see them, I shouldn’t have just waved. I have learned to live with the significant impact a human being’s presence can bring into someone’s life. I now know I took my friends for granted and always thought they would be there. I will never have the chance to ever say thank you for the times they made me laugh out loud when I was at my lowest low. The absence of my old friends made me view them differently and when I make new friends, I will appreciate their presence and not take them for granted. I will love them for who they are and every day with them will be a blessing and one I shall cherish as I know how quickly situations can change in this world. I am so glad that now I know how important it is to associate my life with people that make me feel loved. I have learnt that a friend is someone who makes you laugh, you are both loyal and true to each other and their opinion matters to you. A friend can be anyone: your lover, family, children… Someone who really understands you. If 2014 was a test of being lonely I conquered it by not living but only surviving and taking each day as it came. I am happier now. I have a mass of good friends. The young lost girl who left her country behind has re-found friends. XX


“I would just like to say to you that your life isn’t over yet so grab the bull by the horns and run with it. I never believed in myself before where now with a lot of help I have some sort of self confidence in me. I can also assure you that I still have a long road ahead of me, but I know and even sure of it that one day, just one day I’ll be in a place where there is nothing but peace. I am also sure that if I can do it literally everyone can achieve it also.” Mahy


I arrived in the UK in 2015. When I look back one of the first things I remember is the struggle I had every day. I didn’t know who to trust but to be totally honest it wasn’t like I had the choice either, or I would have found myself in a lot more trouble than I was initially. As silly as it might sound I had a hard time trusting interpreters. As a young woman the idea of sharing personal and vital information about me when I didn’t want anyone to know my whereabouts was one of The most scary thoughts I have ever had. Especially when you’re a Somalian woman. Without bashing anyone I understand more than anyone the strong sense of community Somali people possess. When you tell your personal information to someone they share with others. Honestly speaking that’s how it goes. So trusting a Somali interpreter was a real struggle for me. I can still recall my first time using an interpreter. It was a man and to be honest he was sitting there using his phone nonchalantly. Didn’t even care I came into the room. As the interview was going I was convinced that he would yawned at any time. Like what I was saying was insignificant. I remember I felt so powerless, voiceless and helpless for myself that it was basically unbearable. I just wanted to get over with this interview and find somewhere I could sleep, so I could finally escape reality and dream about something else than literally anything I was living. At the end they asked me if from now on I would prefer to use a female interpreter and I accepted. I mean she couldn’t be worse than this guy right? Afterwards I had an older woman interpreting for me. Don’t get me wrong, she was really nice and sweet. However, as I was starting to open up bit by bit I became anxious having her as my interpreter for some personal reasons, so I stopped having her. And to make the matter even worse my first interview was interrupted because of the phone interpreter we had. She was rude and opinionative and as I didn’t know how to inform my social worker I was just putting in up with but as it was going on she kind of understood because my facial expression was changing drastically so she decided to put an end to it. Then I had another one (still a woman) and she was really amazing. I was as comfortable as I could have been at that time of my life. And just like every good thing have an end, she had to move out of Glasgow, so she wouldn’t interpret for me any longer. I think it was about that time I became really serious to learn English. My head was full of anger and I was basically eager to finally with a big fat ‘F’

speak for myself and have my own voice. Of course I had a lot of support from my teachers but the biggest pusher was my sister. .Although at the beginning I had a lot of difficulties with it, it started to become easy as my hunger for English was growing. Moreover, after 3 years down the line here I am fluent in English and studying a science course and writing about how things went for me. Despite all of that, believe me when I say all of this didn’t happen overnight. I can easily say it took me a lot of time, effort and ton of work to arrive where I am today. However, I also understand that I was really fortunate to be supported by so many people that still support me every single day. I am also not saying that I am that the final stage of my learning either, since I still have a lot more to learn about myself, life and everything that comes in between. Indeed, I get that these couple of words won’t change plenty of lives nor move mountains. Nevertheless, even if a small hand of people who read this and found themselves to be where mentally I was in those days. Mahy

If you are interested in find out about ESOL classes (English for Speakers of Other Languages) turn to page 21 of this booklet for more information or visit www.learnesolglasgow.com.



Tastes Home of

250 strong white flour 7g sachet yeast 1 tsp salt 160ml/5fl oz water 2 tsp olive oil In a bowl, mix together the flour, yeast and salt. Add 120ml/4fl oz of the water and 1 teaspoon of oil. Using your hands mix the ingredients together. Gradually add the remaining water and oil until all the flour has come away from the sides and you have a soft dough. You may not need all the water; the dough should be soft and not sticky. Pour a little oil onto your work top. Place the dough on top and knead for 5-10 minutes. The dough will be wet in the beginning but will form a smooth dough once kneaded. Place it into a clean, oiled bowl, cover and leave to prove until doubled in size. Preheat the oven to 250C and place a clean baking tray or baking stone on the middle shelf. When the dough has doubled in size, tip it out onto a work surface dusted with flour. Knock the dough back by folding it inwards over and over again until all the air is knocked out. Split the dough into 4-6 equally sized balls. Roll each ball into an oval shape 3-5mm thick. Remove the hot tray from the oven, dust with flour and place the pitta breads on it.

Mashi 0.5kg of minced lamb 4/5 medium aubergines 4/5 courgettes 2tbs of tomato puree 2 cups of long grain rice I medium onion finely chopped I tsp of black pepper 1 tsp of salt I handful of pine nuts I tbs of fresh chopped mint 800ml/1pint of warm water Pitta breads to serve Fry the onion and mince with black pepper, salt and butter till it is brown, add the pine nuts to the mixture. Take the top off the courgettes and aubergine carefully. Then take the seeds out of the courgettes and aubergines. Be careful not to break the skin of the vegetables. Mix the tomato purée with 800ml/1pint of warm water and the mint, then pour into the pan. Cover with a lid, bring to the boil then reduce the heat to low simmer for 40 minutes. Serve the stuffed vegetables and the cooking juices withpitta breads on the side.


Bake for 5-10 minutes, or until they just start to colour. Remove them from the oven and cover with a clean cloth until they are cool.

“Our favourite food from Syria, ‘Mashi’ is so delicious and the flavours are special. We eat this all the time but you need a special tool* to make it properly!” *But you can get away with using a butter knife.

“Our favourite sweet is Aawami. We eat this at Eid. It is juicy and very tasty.”

Aawami Ingredients 2 cups of self raising flour 1/14 cups of water 1tbs of cornflour 1tsp of vanilla poweder 1 tsp of yeast I tsp of white sugar Pinch of salt Put the 2 cups flour in a bowl, add cornflour, sugar, yeast and vanilla. Mix together with a spoon and add salt. The mixture should be sticky. Leave for 30 minutes to rise. Mix again to let the air out. Heat about 500ml vegetable oil in a large frying pan and in a small bowl put 3tbs of cold oil. Put a spoon in the bowl of cold oil until it is coated and then collect by hand some of the mixture and press into a ball shape. Put this in the hot oil until it turns yellow. Take from the heat and put on a plate until it is cold. Add into the hot oil again until it turns dark brown.

Photo: Alpha, CC, 2018

Community Meals Glasgow Central Mosque Monday-Thursday 11am-2pm Kinning Park Complex Every Thursday 6-8pm Moogety Meal, Elderpark Community Centre Saturday 1-2.30pm Echo Glasgow Tuesday 6:30pm–8:30pm Kagyu Samye Dzong Glasgow Fri 4–5.30pm, Sat 11–12:30am, Sun 6–7:30pm Food Banks (Free) Glasgow City Mission Monday & Wednesday 10am–12am Places for ingredients Super Asia Allison Street - Range of Halal butchers LIDL Babylon Supermarket Cookery and Food Groups The Hidden Gardens thehiddengardens.org.uk/cookery Urban roots urbanroots.org.uk Moogety Grub Hub moogety.org Govan Hill Baths www.govanhillbaths.com

Flija 1 kg plain flour 700ml water (maybe slightly more) 3/4 tsp salt 200g butter 475ml sour cream 3 tbsp vegetable oil Yoghurt, pickles, cheese, honey to serve Whisk together the flour and water, adding more water if needed so achieve pouring consistency. Put the butter in a saucepan with the cream and vegetable oil, gently heat stirring until the butter has melted. Turn your grill on to medium. Grease the bottom of a wide, shallow, metal, dish and ladle in a thin layer of the batter in a star shape. Place under the grill until browned and cooked through. Spoon a thin layer of the filling over the cooked star, fill the gaps with batter. Return to the grill and wait for it to brown. Repeat until your pancake pie reaches the top of your pan. Serve immediately with yoghurt, pickles, cheese and honey.


Making Connections The Red Cross supports refugees in a wide variety of ways including emergency food, clothes or small amounts of cash to those facing severe hardship. They also help refugees access services and offer friendly advice. “Many of our trained volunteers are refugees themsel ves, so they speak a wide range of languages and can offer valuable support and advice. Wherever possible, all our information materials are translated into the main refugee languages.” Cambridge House 8 Cambridge St Glasgow G2 3DZ 0141 331 4170 www.redcross.org.uk

We have all had issues that we needed support or advice for; from opening a bank account, or finding a cookery class, to finding the right people to give us emotional, educational, or legal support. There are lots of people in Glasgow who are waiting to help you, so don’t be afraid to ask!

Govan Community Project, formerly Govan & Craigton Integration network is a community based organisation working in south west Glasgow, working with and for all the diverse communities of the Greater Govan area. They provide weekly drop-ins, advice, information and advocacy, cultural events, a community flat, English classes, destitution food project, hate-crime reporting and an interpreting service, as well as bringing together public, voluntary and community organisations with local people to help plan public services, promote equal rights and opportunities and cross-cultural understanding, and to build bonds and links within and between communities. The Pearce Institute 840 Govan Rd Glasgow G51 3UU 0141 445 3718 www.govancommunityproject.org.uk

“When I came to Glasgow, the first place I went to was Red Cross. I was 18. They helped me to find my way around Glasgow and to learn English on a course called Chrysalis. It is for young people who arrive in Glasgow and are new to the city. It was so important because I didn’t know anything or anybody. After this I went to college to study ESOL.” Krongo 19

As an independent charity, we’re here to provide essential information and advice to people seeking asylum and refugees in Scotland where we can. But that’s just part of the story: We also campaign for political change, raise awareness about issues that affect refugees; and we work closely with local communities and organisations. Our services are by appointment only. You can make an appointment in person at our offices or by calling and asking to speak to a service manager. Portland House 17 Renfield St Glasgow G2 5AH 0141 248 9799 www.scottishrefugeecouncil.org.uk

Kinning Park Complex is an independent multi-use community centre. Run by the community since they had to step in to prevent closure of the facility by the local Council in 1996. We maintain and rent out halls, meeting rooms, studios and office spaces at affordable prices where people and groups can put their ideas into action. We also manage community development projects in the local area. 43 Cornwall Street Glasgow, G41 1BA www.kinningparkcomplex.org

South East Integration Network is an active, member-led charity working to promote integration and cultural diversity in the South East of Glasgow. We work in Pollockshields, Govanhill, Gorbals, Castlemilk and Toryglen. Through our member organisations we provide local residents from all countries and cultures access to a variety of information, training, services, and activities to fulfill our vision for an integrated community in the South East of Glasgow.

info@seinglasgow.org.uk 07749 902684 Room 5, 77 Torrisdale Street Glasgow, G42 8PW www.seinglasgow.org.uk

The Govanhill Baths is a community hub providing free Health and Wellbeing educational workshops and classes for the local community free of charge. The Trust holds Health and Wellbeing classes and workshops at the Baths to the local community. They include regular Cookery Classes, Yoga sessions for beginners and a Knitting and Crochet drop in group. 99 Calder Street, Glasgow G42 7RA 0141 433 2999

Maryhill Integration Network brings refugee, migrant and local communities together through fantastic art, social, cultural and educational groups, events and projects, offering people a chance to learn new skills, meet new people, share experiences and take part in worthwhile activities to improve their lives and the life of their communities. “MIN has an Open Door Policy so you are welcome to drop in to our office from 10am-5pm Monday to Friday for more information or advice.”

35 Avenuepark St Glasgow G20 8TS 0141 946 9106 www.maryhillintegration.org.uk

The Unity Centre gives practical support and solidarity to all asylum seekers and other migrants in Scotland. We also support anyone detained in any UK Detention Centres. The Centre is run by the Unity Centre Collective. We are No Borders. We believe everyone should have freedom of movement. Our office is based in Glasgow, less than 100 metres from the Home Office. Anyone who is required to sign at the Home Office reporting centre on Brand Street can stop by our office on their way to sign into our signing book. This means we can act quickly if anyone gets detained by the Home Office. We try to share information and training about the asylum process so that we can all be better informed about the system. 22 Ibrox Street, Glasgow G51 1AQ unitycentreglasgow.org

The Space is Scotland’s first Pay What You Decide Venue for events, workshops, food, nonalcoholic drink and laughter. We provide activities for the mind, body and soul: a place for music, art, comedy, film, performance, education and discussions. Check out our Facebook page for details on upcoming workshops and events here at The Space. We invite everyone to try something new, meet new friends, and learn new skills.

MILK is a social enterprise set up to empower and support refugee and migrant women living in Glasgow. We run a small cafe in the Southside of the city where we aim to provide a safe and welcoming environment that promotes integration between them and their new community. 452 Victoria Road G42 8YU www.milkcafeglasgow.com

257 London Road Glasgow G40 1PE www.thespacescotland.org



Planting Seeds Where should I even start, I go to Glasgow Clyde College, Anniesland campus and what I can honestly say it’s that beyond the learning aspect of the college; it is a place where you will feel protected and heard. It is true that at the beginning of your journey in Glasgow the bubble you live in is completely upside down. However trust me you will eventually get accustomed. Just like the 16+ ESOL, dependably on your age the college will place you in a class where you can feel safe, learn English in a fun way and make friends. For someone who has been in a 16+ class and an in normal ESOL class I have seen a tremendous difference between them. Indeed, what makes Anniesland a really cool place outside of the learning aspect; it is the staff from the receptionist to the lecturers or even the bosses. It is a place where you feel you are heard and taken seriously. You can talk about anything with your teachers from the good to the bad and ugly. You will never feel judged and you always have their support. If at the end of your ESOL program you feel you have the potential to change the course, better believe that you will never feel held back. They will guide you and show you a clear path even when you do not know what you want or doubt yourself. - Mahy

To access ESOL courses in college if you are over 18 you must apply online to the ESOL Access register. Colleges are not taking applications except through this online database. If young people are under 18 their Social Worker or Guardian can help them with this process. Once you are registered you can apply for ESOL courses with colleges. For the ESOL Access Register www.learnesolglasgow.com Other providers of ESOL courses in Glasgow: Glasgow Womens Library womenslibrary.org.uk Glasgow Esol Forum www.glasgowesol.org

Refuweegee is a community-led charity set up to ensure that all refugees arriving in Glasgow are welcomed to the city in true Glaswegian style. Find out more at



The New Peer Mentors Scotland are Ruham, Flo, Krongo, Mohamad, Mahy, XX, Alee, Mary, Hamid, Rebaz, Hermon, Aziz and Musa. The 2018 NYPS support team are: Lorraine - Lorraine is a Social worker, working with unaccompanied Young People through the Asylum and Roma team. She enjoys working with young people, developing new ideas and making them happen. She is enthusiastic, caring, supportive and full of fun. She loves potatoes, dancing and teaching new words such as bahookie!

Lyn - Lyn teaches ESOL (English as a Second Language) She loves her job. She is the “small mum” of our group. She is enthusiastic, supportive, friendly and welcoming BUT she can’t do Maths.

Chani - Chani is the project lead for Plantation Production’s Megazine Project, which was made possible with support from the Gannochy Trust. A social worker by training, Chani has found her passion in community arts, heritage, engagement & development - and loves any and all opportunities to work with people on projects which explore their lives, strengths, and communities. Having lived (as an adult) overseas, Chani has an ENORMOUS amount of admiration and respect for the young people who created this zine, and hopes to be just like them when she grows up.* *Even though she is 35.....

Vicki - Vicki works for Y people and she supports young people to support other young people. She is brilliant, helpful, cheerful, supportive and beautiful AND she always brings the chocolate.

Alice - Alice is a professional visual artist working with a range of media including graphic design and photography. She is motivated by projects which use creative disciplines to impart social and cultural change and enjoys learning about peoples stories, particularly womens. She hopes to go on to learn to use design skills to make positive changes to the ways people live and the challenges they face. Alices finds the Peer Mentors incredibly inspirational and knows they will go on to do great things in their lives.

Developing our map We’d like to thank Nahom Ghebrehiwet from Freedom From Torture for his generous support and time in developing this map. There are a number of maps available to print. Here are some of our favourites. These are all linked in our digital magazine. Map detailing larger area of Glasgow www.orangesmile.com/common/img_city_maps/ glasgow-map-1.jpg Culture & Leisure Facilities in Glasgow www.peoplemakeglasgow.com/things-to-do/190glasgow-city-map/file Multiple Languages Available www.scottishrefugeecouncil.org.uk/policy_and_ research/information_and_resources/p11

New Arrivals Map

The Digital Zine


And don’t forget the digital map... We have so many more things for you to check out on our digital map, with links to websites for more info. This zine, and a link to our map, are available via

www.issuu.com/megazineglasgow New Arrivals Map

The Digital Zine



We need help translating this zine into other languages. If you could contribute your time or skills we would love to hear from you. Or if you would like copies of this zine for your service, or to print and distribute on behalf of a service please contact us at peermentorsglasgow@gmail.com and we will be happy to assist.

The MEGAZINE project is supported by Plantation Productions, an arts and media charity based in Govan, Glasgow. Through creative participation they aim to improve wellbeing and address inequality.

Profile for Mega Zine Glasgow

Scotland - Our New Home  

Scotland Our New Home is a magazine for Glasgow’s New Arrivals. It was created by the New Young Peers Scotland; a group of young people fro...

Scotland - Our New Home  

Scotland Our New Home is a magazine for Glasgow’s New Arrivals. It was created by the New Young Peers Scotland; a group of young people fro...