By Haikal Mansor, Rohingya Community Ireland
Rohingya Boys and girls, young and old can dream big and live the dream without fear
On April 29, 2009, the first group of Rohingya arrived in Ireland under Refugee Resettlement Programme coordinated by the government of Ireland and UNHCR.
The experiences in Kutupalong and Nayapara refugee camps were comparably similar to those of Burma under the former military regime, whose ‘Operation Clean Nation’ in 1991/2 forced more than 250,000 Rohingya flee to Bangladesh where the community continue to live in limbo without the prospects of returning home or building their lives.
A total of 78 Rohingyas found their new home in Ireland after most of them spending 17 years of their lives in the Bangladesh refugee camps under dire conditions with extremely limited access to food, water, health, education, sanitation, movement and work.
The new home in Ireland provides the chances to rebuild the lives and walk the healthy environment with rights and opportunities in abundance.
While the persecuted minority continue to suffer severe forms of crimes against humanity in the country of origin – Burma, the inclusive Irish Society sends an important message of integration as “richness of diversity” and freedom of rights as “core values”.
The community in Ireland now enjoy the freedom and the human rights that Burma has denied and stripped of.
Boys and girls, young and old can dream big and live the dream without fear, thank to the government of Ireland, St. Catherine’s Community Services Centre, Carlow County Council, Carlow Regional Youth Service, Carlow Volunteer Centre, Carlow Integration Forum, Garda Sióchána, schools an colleges, UNHCR, Burma Action Ireland and many more.