Storytelling for undocumented migrants in the Netherlands

       Home is a story you carry on your back

The life of undocumented migrants is among the most fragile in society. This project creates an inclusive place of welcome that invites selected participants to develop stories from their home culture. In doing so they’re able to experience a sense of community while remembering the values they bring with them from their home culture. 

Once the course has finished, participants join a community of storytellers curating their own performances and developing as artists on their own terms.

Elements: storytelling workshop, vulnerable communities
ASKV, PAO Amsterdam

Six weeks of courses, ending with a celebratory performance

  • Target group: undocumented migrant, asylum seeker, vulnerable migrant communities
  • Six sessions of 2.5 hours
  • Ideal number of participants: 8
  • Each session creates space for welcome, introduces and practices storytelling skills
  • Participants choose a folk story from their own culture to learn and develop
  • Along the way storytelling skills are improved
  • Encourages sense of cultural pride and experience of community
  • Past participants have gone on to become speakers for their community at other events

Programme outcomes

  • Develop skill in oral storytellling
  • Work with folk stories to transmit home culture
  • Become a culture maker rather than culture taker
  • Stable place of community during unsteady time
  • Ongoing performances to increase skill and take ownership of community

… and being able to tell some very fine stories.


Participant experience

“The course reminded me where I am from”

“I have more confidence in speaking, not just in storytelling but elsewhere”

 “This is a place to play and have fun, and find friends”

Location experience

“Simon gives the undocumented refugees a storytelling workshop in which the participants organize a storytelling event at the end of the course. 

Simon is not only committed, reliable and always thinking of ways to better reach his target group. He is a clearly impact-driven person who knows how to connect to people regardless of background.”

Godfrey Lado – Manager, Project Activiteiten Ongedocumenteerden 


If this course is a fit for your community, book a chat with me below