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  • Writer's pictureSarah Taal

Exciting Book Launch Evening- Voices from the Frontline

Updated: Jul 31, 2022

On Monday 21st June, we had our book launch at the Sol Café, it was a wonderful mix of tasty food, good music and some talented artists. Our first event post lockdown, it was the perfect kickstart allowing us all to get together and continue to highlight voices, with key talks from Baobab women- Loraine Mponela, Espoir Njei and Gimbi Cham.

Behind all the excitement of the event, we had come together for one main reason- the launch of our new book "Voices from the Frontline". Baobab women worked alongside each other and community artists to powerfully and beautifully encapsulate their feelings through pictures and poetry- creating a book."

These women speak of depression, being overwhelmed with anxiety and fear, feeling belittled and less than human. Any one of their stories demonstrates impossible situations where they are trapped between a traumatic past and a persistently uncertain future".

The book offers a first hand account of the trauma experienced when dealing with the UK immigration process, how it can often be dehumanising and demoralising.

"Asylum seekers are not treated with dignity...Many asylum seekers are forced to live in very old and deplorable houses with rats, mice and bed bugs".

We are all continuing with hopes and calling for better and fair immigration system for all.

Being able to share these voices is of utmost importance to us at Baobab- if you would like to get your hands on a copy of one of these books, email us:

Books cost £10, all proceeds go to Baobab, to support our ongoing advocacy work.

Big thanks to all the volunteers, Pat who chaired the evening, Beth for checking temperatures, Bridget and Shalom managing the book sales, to Sol Cafe for providing the delicious food, drinks and venue, to Celebrating Sanctuary for organising the musician, Millicent Chapanda, Zimbabwean singer and Mbira player who was fabulous, and Birmingham City Council for the event costs.

Sol Cafe is a new venture - 'Solidarity Kitchen was founded by members of the Birmingham community and The Warehouse Cafe cooperative at the beginning of the Covid pandemic in March 2020. Over 20,000 free meals were cooked and delivered to people in need. This grassroots initiative organised volunteers, logistics, information campaigns and food thanks to an online fundraiser which reached over £17,000. With the end of the pandemic in sight and online donations substantially reduced, we decided to create a one day a week, pay as you feel cafe that offers a welcoming, accessible safe space for all.' To find out more or sign up to volunteer, check out their website:

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