Refugee Voices Laughter Yoga

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We invite you to join this 1 hour virtual Refugee Voices event with Hadiya Ahmed, who generously shares her lived experience of being forced to flee her homeland, alongside Sally Wehbi a certified Laughter Yoga teacher. This interactive session is intended to build awareness and understanding, and offer a moment of collective joy through wellbeing.

This years Refugee Week theme is 'Healing'; the process of recovering from a painful experience or situation. Few people understand or experience this process on a scale as deep and wide than those who have lost their homes, jobs, family, country and connection to culture, forced to build new lives from scratch. Everyones experience of resilience is different though there is a lot to be taught by people with lived experience of seeking refuge and asylum about holding onto hope when going on seems impossible – as well as about how art, creativity, and community can help us to heal.

Part 1: In conversation with Hadiya Ahmed, a Syrian refugee and Language Partner with NaTakallam. Hadiya will share her own story of displacement and her opinion on the importance of mental health and healing in the context of displacement.

Part 2: Led by by Sally Wehbi, NaTakallam's School and Community Coordinator and certified Laughter Yoga instructor. Laughter Yoga is an active and engaging way of practicing yoga with laughter as an added exercise to improve psychological well-being. The saying 'laughter is the best medicine' may hold some truth as various research studies suggest endorphin releasing laughter is a natural pain killer and mood booster.

"These sessions allow me to connect with people worldwide and describe to them the life we had and have now. I find these to be mutual learning sessions. These sessions help us learn about new societies and concepts...we exchange information about our cultures, how we eat, how we play, and how we live and love. The sesisons are like colourful bridges connecting minds, emotions and attitudes putting the base for a better concept of humanity" Varty, Syrian and Armenian Language Partner, NaTakallam

The conversation is hosted by Nottingham Contemporary, introduced by Natelle Morgan-Brown (Communities Programmer) and led by NaTakallam, 'a social enterprise hiring refugees and host community members as language tutors, translators, and cultural exchange partners', in support of Nottingham Refugee Week.

Every year Nottingham Contemporary works alongside volunteer run coordinating group 'Nottingham Refugee Week' and our valued community partners to recognise Refugee Week. We contribute to a vibrant programme of local events including arts, sports and music, aiming to raise awareness and celebrate the contributions people seeking refuge and asylum make to the economic, cultural and social life of our city.

  • This event is free
  • You will need to be able to access this virtual event via Zoom using a mobile phone, laptop or tablet with an internet connection; a link will be shared by email once a booking is made
  • This session will be in English (language)
  • Unfortunately BSL will not be provided; live captions will be on screen (
  • Due to the event themes and context we recommend this to be suitable for peopled aged 12 and over
  • We welcome participants to ask questions, engage in dialogue, and reflect with us throughout the conversation.
  • Participants are encouraged to turn on cameras (if possible) to participate in this collective experience
  • A short rest break will be included
  • For any queries or access requests, please contact / 0115 948 9750 / Nottingham Contemporary, Weekday Cross, NG12GB