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Internationally well connected.

ConAction Conference, Berlin - 2./3. October 2017

Raquel Herzog (l.) und Ruha Said für SAO in Berlin.

SAO is well known, and our work is appreciated. Our network is excellent, especially on Lesvos and increasingly in Athens (Oxfam-Oxford Committee for Famine Relief, MSF- Médecins Sans Frontières, and Greek Council for Refugees GCR). In October 2017, SAO participated in the big ConAction conference in Berlin. The international network of "Grassroots" aid organisations invited Ruha Said (SAO Cultural Advisor) as a former refugee woman. Together with SAO's Raquel Herzog (Founder), she represented SAO among more than 50 NGOs at the conference with 240 participants. SAO was one of only three organisations from Switzerland and the only one at all with a clear women's focus, which met with great interest. Here you can find the documentation of the conference > The portrait of SAO is on page 55.

A few words about Ruha Said: she is a Kurdish Syrian, studied English literature in Damascus, fled in October 2014, and spent one and a half years in Turkey sewing children's clothes for 11 hours a day. Afterward, she fled with two sisters, three cousins, and her 95-year-old grandmother to Lesvos, where she met Raquel Herzog. In the meantime, the whole family lives in Sweden. Ruha is available to SAO as a translator, cultural advisor, and ambassador. Her grandmother Amina was a great inspiration for SAO and is the namesake of our Community and Empowerment Centre in Athens. Read Raquel and Amina's story here: 100-Women Blog von Fatima Vidal. You can meet Ruha Said in the film from Ida Schmieder made about SAO's work on Lesbos. You can find the video here > Ruha Said gave a first-hand account at the 1st Benefits Matinee for SAO at MOODS in conversation with Marina Villa. We will do everything we can to have Ruha with us again at the 2nd Benefits Matinee this year on the 18th of November and again at MOODS.


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