Participants: Juan Manuel Acosta Salazar (Colombia), Andrew Agassi (Uganda), Hisham Alhadrab (Jordan), Danny D. Kora (Turkey), Dr hab. Krzysztof Stachyra & Dominika Dopierała (Poland) 

Moderated by: Samuel Gracida, MA, MT


About this session:

“According to the UNHCR, worldwide there were 26.4 million refugees by the end of 2020, 86% of which were hosted in developing countries. Additionally, there are only few and sparse writings and reports on the music and music therapy response to this refugee crisis, and particularly less coming from low and middle income countries. This session seeks to bring together individuals leading the music response to the global refugee crisis and using music to promote the wellbeing of refugees in projects located in Colombia, Uganda, Jordan, Turkey, and Poland.”

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Juan Manuel Acosta Salazar (Colombia) - Music in primary health care with host and migrant communities in Colombia with high numbers of Venezuelan migrants

Since July of 2020 the Migration and Health program from the International Organization For Migrations (IOM) has been developing a special project called #COMPONERPARACUIDAR, which aims to help community leaders and managers to develop strategies for Information, Education and Communication (IEC) through music, and through this achieve a more impactful work with migrant communities and host communities. Virtual and face-to-face workshops have been carried out in which the participants are taught music, song creation and composition, re-creation of songs (songs parody), guided music relaxation, and other activities in which the main theme is to learn musical tools to communicate messages of health.

Juan Manuel will share how the work has been carried out with the communities of different territories where IOM is present to help the migrant population, specifically Venezuelan migrants.

About Juan Manuel:

Juan Manuel Acosta Salazar is a professional musician, graduated from the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana in Bogotá, Colombia (2007). He started working with vulnerable children populations for several years, and then he was a teacher at a musical High school for 5 years in Chía (Cundinamarca, Colombia) and other towns close to the Capital District, Bogotá. Since 2020 he works as a consultant expert in musical pedagogy for the International Organization for Migrations IOM.  He teaches musical skills and musical strategies to the Venezuelan migrant communities and host communities on how to reinforce their Health Knowledge through music and how to use musical tools to help their communities using music in the INFORMATION, EDUCATION AND COMMUNICATION (IEC) strategy on Primary Health Care.

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Andrew Agassi (Uganda) - Brass For Africa Uganda Country Director

Brass for Africa is an award-winning charity that delivers music education with an innovative and tailored life-skills curriculum to extremely disadvantaged children and young people across Uganda, Rwanda and Liberia. They have brought to life a stage, a recording studio, instruments and mobile cinema to BidiBidi Refugees Settlement – one of the world’s largest refugee settlements located in Northern Uganda. It is home to over 240,000 refugees, many of whom have fled the civil war in South Sudan. Women and children make up approximately 86% of the population and the vast majority are out of work and rely on food aid (UN). The German Foreign Office provided financial support to design, develop and produce the prototype of a fully equipped mobile multimedia ‘Music Lab’, an idea that was conceived and brought to reality by their partners Music Connects

Traveling through the vast BidiBidi region, the LAB Uganda truck will aim to reach as many refugees as possible. Brass for Africa works alongside local organisations to provide regular brass music education, life-skills training and performance opportunities. Lab Uganda and the Community Music Programme seeks to strengthen and complement the efforts of improving Protection, Education, Resilience and Livelihood for refugees and host communities.

About Andrew:

Andrew is responsible for all aspects of the operation in Uganda and Rwanda, having previously been Head of Logistics and Administration. Andrew Agassi is an IT Professional from his native Kenya, and prior to joining BfA, Andrew was the Regional Director of Hope 4 Kids International in Africa overseeing projects in Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and Namibia. He is a trumpet student, and a total believer in the power of music to create brighter futures and restore Hope

Photo Credit: Geoffroy Schied/MUSIC CONNECTS

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Hisham Alhadrab (Jordan)

Psychosocial Support Music Groups for Syrian refugees in Jordan: a music therapy project that provides music therapy sessions to youth who live inside Za'tari Syrian Refugee camp located in the north of Jordan. The project operates under Questscope, an international non-governmental, non-profit organization founded in 1988 with the goal of putting the last, first. Questscope relies on a theory of social change that recognizes the interconnected nature of individual transformation, institutional response, and policy changes at the governance level. Mr. Alhadrab is the designer and leader of the project and he will share his experience, challenges, and results of this project.


About Hisham:

Hisham Alhadrab MA, MT-BC a music psychotherapist and a mental and medical health professional based in Amman, Jordan. He obtained his Master’s degree in Music Therapy from New York University, and holds two Bachelor degrees; a BA in Music Therapy from the Jordan National Music Conservatory, and a BSc in Nursing from the University of Jordan. And a Diploma in Oud performance and Arabic music theory.

Mr. Alhadrab is currently a Music Therapy Consultant with Questscope. He is also the head of the Music Therapy Program offered by The National Music Conservatory in Jordan (A Four-years BA program), and he operates his own private practice in music psychotherapy. He has a varied expertise in the fields of mental health and psychosocial support, trauma, child development, palliative and end of life care, as well as surgery and emergency medical services as he worked as a Scrub RN, and Senior ER RN.

Mr. Alhadrab is a member of the Development and finance Committee of The International Association for Music and Medicine, and member of the Research & Ethics committee of the World Federation of Music Therapy. A former Fulbright scholarship recipient, he sits on the Pre-doctoral Award Selection Review Committee at the Jordanian Binational Fulbright Commission. 

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Danny D. Kora (Turkey) - Music Therapist (MT) - Momentum Creative Consultancy 

In 2014, Danny co-developed a program to help Syrian refugee children living in Turkey learn coping skills and techniques for safely releasing emotions. In coordination with an art therapist and a dance movement therapist, they developed a program and led trainings for trauma rehabilitation with numerous volunteers and translators, who worked together as a team with children ages 6-12. Over the years, the program has reached thousands of Syrian children, and is still being run today by a non-profit foundation. Danny is currently a consultant for the program and does occasional workshops and team trainings.  

In 2018, Danny co-developed a project for two groups of Rohingya refugee women living in a camp in Bangladesh, who had fled from Myanmar. The program was focused on gender-based violence (GBV) and aimed to provide participants with skills and coping mechanisms to deal with the horrors of war and GBV. A dance movement therapist and a visual arts facilitator also worked to implement the two-week program, including trainings for local staff and translators. In 2019, the same team trained local physical therapists working with Syrian refugees in the southeast of Turkey in techniques to facilitate better rehabilitation programs while building better rapport with clients using creative arts-based methods.  


About Danny:

Since graduating with a degree in Music Therapy at Berklee College of Music in 2008, Danny has been living in Istanbul, Turkey, focused on the use of music therapy for mental health, child growth and development, and trauma rehabilitation for war survivors. He has led a music therapy program at a psychiatric hospital in Istanbul for five years, working with both acute and chronic patient groups. He co-developed two separate multidisciplinary programs for Syrian refugee children in Turkey and Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh, and has worked with a team to support multinational refugees living in Germany. He co-authored three book chapters and is currently working in school settings with young children. Danny is also known as Danny S. Lundmark.

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Dominika Dopierała & Dr hab. Krzysztof Stachyra, PhD, MT-C (Poland)

The income of Ukrainian migrants to Poland has created a crisis situation since the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Dominika will report on the opportunity she had to coordinate cultural workshops for guests from Ukraine, as well as a worskhop for Ukrainian children and a small group of family members from Ukraine. She will speak about her early stage observations on musicing with people experiencing the refugee crisis. 


Additionally, Dr. Stachyra will report on the organising issues and support for music therapists who work with the refugees in Poland.

About Dominika:

Dominika Dopierała - musician and certified music therapist. She has graduated masters level studies at Nordoff-Robbins Music Therapy Center in London. For the past nine years Dominika has been working musically with various groups of people: session participants with neurological diseases and accident injuries, people with multiple disabilities, refugees, people in homelessness crisis and with mental health problems. 

In 2016, Dominika founded Nordoff Robbins Polska Foundation, which organizes music therapy sessions and open space music therapeutic events with the participation of various social groups. As part of the Foundation’s activities Dominika runs Mobile Music Center – a mobile music therapy room, and also an outdoor music scene. Her personal goal is to promote active music-making as an applied art – performed every day and available to everyone. 

About Dr. Stachyra:

Affiliation: Maria Curie Skłodowska University in Lublin, Poland

Krzysztof Stachyra, PhD, certified music therapist and a music teacher. Head of Postgraduate Music Therapy Study Program and assistant professor at Maria Curie-Skłodowska University, Lublin, Poland. President of the Polish Music Therapists Association and chairman of the music therapists' certification committee. Last decade he focused on broadening the role of music and music therapy in the teachers' personal development and professional training. 

This session is free and open to the public! Visit our Facebook page at 20:00 Greece time on May 31st to watch it live. It will also remain recorded on our Facebook page afterwards. Click here to go to our Facebook page.

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