Journeys of Hope: Masood’s story
During #RefugeeWeek we’re listening to the stories and experiences of those who have journeyed across the world to seek safety. Masood’s story reminds us of the importance of creating an environment where we welcome the stranger.
Where did you come from? What was life like there?
I come from Iran. Iran has a rich history and culture but due to religious and political events, human rights have been taken away from Iranian people and the extremist Islamic government has caused life difficulties for all generations.
What has your experience of life in the UK been like?
Living in the UK has been great so far. A friendly place to live with freedom and human rights. Almost all of the people I met have been nice to me. Church members are so kind, welcoming and helpful, and ordinary people are pretty respectful.
It gets tough sometimes, though, when it comes to communicating. Language barriers and cultural differences also could be other challenging issues that I have to deal with.
How has COVID-19 affected you?
The COVID-19 crisis has had a big impact on my life indeed. In terms of job, many companies did not reply to my job applications or postpone employment. Also, socialising with people as another issue, is being so limited which results in mental issues, especially when you don’t have many friends or family around you.
What are your hopes for your future? What are your hopes for the future of your community?
I hope the future will be much more promising, not only for me but also for all the same kinds. The future, in which people could follow any religion wherever they are and have freedom, especially in Iran or countries like that.
Is there anything else you would like to share?
I would like to thank those people who accepted me as a member of the society and helped me settle in the UK.
As Churches, our hope is for a society that welcomes the stranger. We believe that we can all play a part in this, by creating a welcoming environment in our churches, communities and as a nation.
To find out more about how you can add your voice to call for changes to bring hope to more refugees and asylum seekers have a look at our Journeys of Hope page.