Fri 23 Jun 2023
| Promo codes can be applied at checkout

Register for your free ticket on the Festival of Belonging’s Eventbrite.
Fri 23 Jun 2023
| Promo codes can be applied at checkout

Register for your free ticket on the Festival of Belonging’s Eventbrite.

Experience a spoken word and music concert on Friday 23 June as part of the Festival of Belonging. The concert includes refugee-writers and poets Maged Mujed from Iraq, Basel Alkhalaf from Syria, poetry by Anton Floyd, read by Roos Demol, and musicians Citadel, the band of refugees and International Protection Applicants, and Orba, an Arabesque band from Dublin.

The festival also includes an exhibition that celebrates the art of refugees in Ireland. Curated by artist Kasia Nita, the exhibition opened in Triskel Christchurch on Thursday 8 June and runs until Saturday 24 June. Exhibiting Artists are Nasir Elsafi from Sudan; Leanne Mc Donagh, Ireland, Traveller Community; Gregory Kalala, Democratic Republic of Congo; Sobia Rasheed, Pakistan; Elton Sibanda, Zimbabwe; Viktoria Kondratieva, Ukraine; and Juan Carlos Moron from Venezuela.

The Musicians and spoken word artists

Citadel is a group of musicians formed in the Kinsale Road Accommodation centre in 2018, who refuse to be put down by the system. They are from different countries, playing together and bringing you music from Burundi, South Africa, Ukraine and Angola and Tanzania. The musicians perform songs from home, accompanied by rhythms and tunes from the world. Citadel raises awareness and spreads joy, peace and understanding by sharing their music with each other and with the Irish community. The group was formed in September 2018, after a successful world music day, and have since performed in the International Guitar festival in Clonakilty, the fundraiser for MASI in Dolan’s Warehouse in Limerick, Culture night in Cork, the Intercultural day in Middleton, GLOW festival in Cork, and The Big Sing in the National Concert Hall in Dublin. COVID put a break on their endeavours, but they have regrouped and are happy to take to the stage again. They recently performed in the ‘Night Out for Ukraine’ concert in the Cork Opera House, at Electric Picnic and the Songs From An Open Road Festival in Galway. Some of the musicians are now refugees, others are newly arrived International Protection Applicants. They all speak different languages, but music is their universal language. For this conference we will perform with our ladies from South Africa, Neo and Gloria. In the light of the recent outbursts of racism and anti-refugee sentiment, we will sing two acapella songs from the Apartheid era in  South Africa.

Orba is a diverse band of talented musicians and singers from the Arab world. They had been part of a newly formed Arab 13 member choir in November 2022, débuted at the Arabesqueco Night. Some of which continued as a quartet playing popular Arabic classic songs sung by Um Kalthum, Fayruz, Kathem Alsahir and many more. The Orba debut was in December 2022 and managed by the violinist Haitham Khalil from Egypt. The main singer is Jihene Dhraief from Tunisia and Imad Almestarihi from Jordan also sings and plays the oud (lute). The tabla percussionist changes according to the availability of various talented artists, such as Abdulkarim Alarby from Algeria or Ramzi Murr and Jalal Malak from Syria.

Majed Mujed
An Iraqi journalist and poet, Majed started working in journalism in 1998 and became the head of the cultural section in a number of Iraqi newspapers including Al-Moutamar and Al-Sabah. He is also one of the founders of the Iraqi House of Poetry. He has won several awards for his poetry, including the Conference of Iraqi Intellectuals Award in 2008, the Iraqi House of Wisdom Award in 2009, the Poetry Award in Ireland Play It Forward Fellowships Announcement in 2021, and the Poetry Award from the Irish Culture and Arts Center – Agility award 2022. He also won the Al-Mada Foundation for Culture and Media Award in journalism in 2009. He has published six poetry collections in Arabic between 1997 and 2022. In 2023, he published a poetry collection in Arabic and English with Skein Press publishing house in Ireland. His poems have been translated into English, German, and Swedish.

Basel Alkhalaf
Basel Alkhalaf is a 46-year-old Syrian man who was resettled in Ireland in 2018 after fleeing the Syrian war to Lebanon. Basel suffered a great deal of grief and injustice in Syria because of the war. He writes poetry, and his books are currently in print in Lebanon.

Anton Floyd
“I have drawn on my own experiences of displacement during the Cypriot War of Independence and the intercommunal strife that followed (1955–1970), as well as my family history of displacement during the pogroms of the Maronite community in the Mount Lebanon region in the 1860s. I returned to the island with my wife and infant son and lived in Cyprus during the 1980s and early 1990s. It was a country traumatised by the Turkish invasion. It still is.” – Anton Floyd on his poetry
Anton Floyd was born in Egypt and raised in Cyprus. He was educated in Ireland, studying at Trinity College Dublin and University College Cork. He has lived and worked in the Eastern Mediterranean as a teacher, school principal, artistic director and producer. He is now teaching in Cork City and lives near Inchigeelagh in West Cork.  In this event, Roos Demol will be reading poems from Anton’s book Depositions. Anton has drawn on his own experience of being displaced as a child and has spoken to many people seeking asylum here while writing this collection. The selections from the central part of the collection, consisting of 120 haiku-like tercets, has been translated into 20 languages. The proceeds of this book will go entirely to the UNHCR.

International Community Dynamics CLG is delighted to announce the upcoming Festival of Belonging which will take place in Cork on 23 and 24 June, supported by the International Protection Integration fund of the DCDEIY.

  • On 24 June, a Conversation Café with the theme of Belonging and facilitated by Think Speak Do, will take place in The Haven Café from 11am till 12:30pm. You can grab a coffee and have a friendly chat with people of refugee background.
  • The final event is a conference which will be held in UCC, organised in co-operation with the Department of Sociology and Criminology.
    Keynote speakers on the day will be Deborah Kayembe, Rector of Edingburgh University; Professor Maggie O’Neil, of the UCC dept. of Sociology ad Criminology; and Wanette Van Egdom-TuinstraOther speakers will include Dr Amin Sharifi Isaloo, Pooja Prinya, Roos Demol, Zephyrin Ngaliema.

With this conference, International Community Dynamics wants to draw attention to how the inclusion of new communities can enrich our own lives and culture, and is trying to look for answers on what belonging means to refugees and migrants, what have we done right, what can we do better?

The Festival is financed by the International Protection Integration fund and supported by Triskel Arts Centre and the UCC Department of Sociology and Criminology.

Quote by Pierrot Ngadi, Chairperson:Belonging is the feeling of security and support when there is a sense of acceptance, inclusion, integration, and identity for a member of a certain group. It is when a person can bring their authentic self to any activity. We want to highlight this theme by showing of the unique talents of Refugees and IPAs, to give people the opportunity to get to know them better and to give them a feeling of belonging, with their own cultures and talents. The conference is a highlight for us and we are very honoured to welcome Debora Kayembe, Professor Maggie O’Neil and Wanette Van Egdom-Tuinstra, three exceptional women whose expertise lies in Human rights, belonging and place making.

Spoken Word & Music Concert

Fri 23 June | 8pm


Thurs 8 June  11am-4pm
Thurs 15 June  11am-4pm
Fri 16 June  11am-6pm
Sat 17 June  11am-4pm
Thurs 22 June  11am-4pm
Fri 23 June  11am-4pm
Sat 24 June  11am-6pm


PLEASE NOTE: you will be redirected to the Festival of Belonging’s Eventbrite where you can register for tickets