Tuesday, September 26, 2023
Ellie Goulding recently visited Jordan for the opening of Zaatari Music & Arts Center at Zaatari Refugee Camp, Jordan.
Taking to Instagram, the singer shared heartwarming photos from the opening, where she was seen cutting the ribbon to the center, hugging and talking with the refugees.
Along with the snaps, she wrote a lengthy and insightful note about the impact of arts and music on people who have experienced trauma, and notes how refugees often fit this description.
She wrote: “Yesterday I had the honour of opening the Zaatari Music & Arts Center at Zaatari Refugee Camp, Jordan . This is the largest refugee camp in the Middle East with 60% of the 85,000 residents under 25.
She reflected on the memorable experience of meeting the artists in the refugees, “It was an extraordinary privilege to meet young Syrian people and to get the opportunity see them not only as refugees but as musicians and artists and performers. I will remember and treasure their performances for a long time to come.”
The Hate Me singer then reflected on how refugees’ struggles often lead to a life focused on survival, leaving behind arts and culture.
“To be a refugee is often to experience trauma, a removal of identity and the erasure of culture. It’s an existence that leaves little room for dreams.”
Ellie also reflected on the ability of arts to heal trauma: “The Zaatari Music & Arts Center reinstates both dreams and hope. Thanks to this remarkable initiative, in this corner of the camp young people will now have access to classes in Guitar, Drums, Oud, Voice & Dance, a performance space and a recording studio.”
“Music and the arts can help to heal trauma and to reconnect refugees with their culture and identity.”
As she appreciated the people helping Zaatari assist the refugees, she urged the global community to take action to help the Syrian refugees.
“But despite the best efforts of the Jordanian services and many international agencies, international budgets for Syrian refugees are being cut.”
“We must not forget that 110M people are currently forcibly displaced from their homes, which is the most since World War 2,” she added.
“My visit to Zaatari confirms my belief that only by coming together as a global community to support refugees properly can we give theses young people the beautiful future they deserve,” she concluded.