Refugee Week 2022: Khin Khin Sumon

Khin Khin Sumon and her family resettled in Australia in 2012, following years of living in a refugee camp in Thailand. Khin Khin is a member of the Karen community in Geelong.
Refugee Week 2022: Khin Khin Sumon

What do you love most about living in Geelong?

The sense of community.  Also, there are opportunities to be involved in arts and cultural activities.

What does healing mean to you?

Finding myself, and also finding strength through community. Often people think that they can only rely on themselves and go through whatever they’re going through on their own. But there is help and support available if you reach out and look for it.

How can art and storytelling help with healing?

There are some things that we cannot put into words and some of my experiences are sometimes difficult to share. I’m a visual person so I love communicating through art. Also, storytelling is a powerful tool that can educate people. You can learn so much even from talking to a stranger.

What are you most looking forward to in the future?

Self-development. I used to only think about others. I feel like I need to make sure that I also look after myself while helping others.

How can we better support people from refugee backgrounds?

From a practical sense, we’re still dealing with errors that were unintentionally made when we first arrived because we didn’t speak English and couldn’t understand all the paperwork.

I hope that more support for newly-arrived refugees are provided.

For the wider community, I think more could be done to enable them to understand our experiences and to hear about our stories – it can be through art and cultural activities.

Page last updated: Wednesday, 3 January 2024