"A journey of hope but full of challenges… My name is Polat and I’m 18 years old. I am from Maidan Wardak, one of the 34 provinces within the central region of Afghanistan. Everything was perfect. I really enjoyed spending time with my parents, playing with my brothers, and helping my sisters in home chores.
There was no political stability, but everyone was free to do their business and nobody made problems for others. I used to go to school and I attended short courses in English and in computer programs. I was really interested in studying, and I was trying hard to become a well-known and respected member of society. I travelled to school by foot, which made me very tired, but returning home to the smile of my mother and the encouragement of my father help me to forget my exhaustion. Those are the most intricate parts of my life which I really miss.
After moving to Greece from Turkey I stayed in Leros Island of Greece for eight months and then I moved to Athens. Through these eight months I was volunteering with some organizations and after moving to Athens a few months later I find out about “The Unmentionables” that need someone to help them with English to Dari translation and also they are starting a photography class. I didn’t know anything about photography before but since I started class with the three volunteers and professional photographer I learned a lot of things. The teachers are really amazing and they always encourage me. It really changed my way of seeing to the world and the credit goes to my great teachers, I will always appreciate them.
To sum up, in that time I have learned many thing. Though it was very difficult but I learned how to face challenges, how to deal with different people from different regions and learned new skills. I also made new friends and we are luckily in one room. Furthermore l really miss my family and especially my sweet mother, whentime I talk to her tear comes out of my eyes. Instead my mother encourages me to be strong and hopeful and she says I always pray for you to approach your goals. And I wish that one day my dreams will come true and see my parents proud."
August - October 2017
Prints of the students' work are available for purchase here. 100% of the proceeds go directly back to the students, giving them a sense of financial freedom to help them in their journey to a better, safer, and happier life.