Journey to Freedom 2 tells the unique stories of nine Australians and their journeys to successful lives in Australia
This series of engaging short-form documentaries shows how professionals from refugee backgrounds overcame difficulties and forged pathways to meaningful employment
The series was created by high school students who are themselves from a refugee background during Show Me The Way mentoring programs.
Evon left Iraq with her family when she was 16 and travelled to Turkey. She was accepted as a refugee by the United Nations and after two years and two months came to Australia in 1999. After attaining 99.4% UAI she went to Sydney University and graduated with a Bachelor of Pharmacy in 2006. She registered as a pharmacist in 2007.
Because of the war, Stimon’s family left Sudan and came to Australia in 2004. Here he found school hard and had a difficult home life. However, after achieving his high school certificate he got an ATAR to go to university but instead chose college. After 12 months he started a 5-week IT internship at Mitchell High School. At the end of the internship the school principal asked him to stay on in a paid position.
Dr Inaam Jajoo
Dr Jajoo travelled from Baghdad to visit her father in Northern Iraq occasionally and this was seen as suspicious by the Saddam Hussein regime. She was often interrogated for suspected smuggling of intelligence information. In 1998, scared for their lives, she and her 5 year-old son left Iraq and travelled to Turkey with fake ID. Cramped in a wooden box with 40 others they escaped to Greece. She only had her dental degree, her birth certificate, a box of matches, needle and thread, antibiotics and a pair of scissors.
Speaker, Trainer & Mentor
Om worked as the head of planning and development of Bhutan Telecom. He found himself under surveillance as the authorities were suspicious of possible dissident activity. In 1992 he got inside information he was about to be arrested. He and his family decided to flee the country. In Australia, with the help of others he developed a sustainable model for refugee resettlement.
Meena left Kabul, Afghanistan with family when she was four because of the war with the Taliban and government forces. After graduating with a Bachelor of Pharmacy from the University of Sydney, Meena now liaises with specialists in the field of osteoporosis.
Dr Ahmad Alrubaie
In 1991, during uprising of the Iraqi people Dr Alrubaie was at the centre of helping the injured. Saddam Hussein’s regime was crushed and Dr Alrubaie and his wife and son fled to Kurdistan and then Iran. In 1994 he came to Australia. He has an interest in literature and translated George Orwell’s “1984” into Arabic because of his experiences under Saddam Hussein.
High School Principal
Born in Beirut, Lebanon 1974, Hala spent the first 15 years of her life in a war torn zone. Her schooling was interrupted due to the state the country was in and the location of her school, right in the middle of a no go zone. Basic needs such as food, water and electricity were luxuries, studying by candlelight was the norm.
Ziad’s family left Iraq in 1996 because of discrimination and being targeted by the Saddam Husain regime as a non-Muslim. They travelled by car from Baghdad to Jordan for 48 hours when he was 16. In Australia he completed his high school studies and went on to an Advanced Diploma in Maths at TAFE. He obtained a Bachelor Degree in Commerce majoring in accounting at Western Sydney University. Tertiary studies helped him to grow as a person and create his career in the finance industry.
Domestic Violence Project Worker
Because of the conflict with the Taliban in Afghanistan Maryam left for Pakistan. She was accepted by Australia under the Humanitarian Resettlement program for women at risk. She arrived in Melbourne in 1999 with her four siblings at the age of twenty. Maryam is passionate about supporting people in community, and her focus is on those from minority backgrounds.