THE PROJECT
In 2011, within the context of the Arab Spring, the Syrian people commenced protests against the government, leading to a nationwide unrest which still continues. Amplified by the expansion of ISIS, the situation has become dramatic, leaving individuals and families with no other option than a nomadic life that they didn’t choose. Hoping to find a better and safer life, many Syrians seek to find refuge in the United Kingdom, but the trip from Syria to the United Kingdom is strewn with obstacles.

'Valid for Travel' is a project that has been built up as an extended documentary series focusing on the condition of Syrian refugees in the United Kingdom. Currently it is estimated that around 4 million Syrians have left their country and that approximately 3000 have chosen the United Kingdom as shelter. ‘Valid for travel’ brings together a range of photographic images and personal testimonies as a means to engage with this issue beyond the simplified stereotypes created around immigration. The project aims to raise awareness of the situation in which these people have been put, fleeing the conflict in their homeland.

Throughout the process I have conducted a series of interviews and negotiated portraits with a number of Syrian men who have recently arrived in the UK. Photographs have played an important role in how these men have told their own stories that include family photographs, keepsakes they have brought with them from home, while other images taken on mobile phones document the conditions they have endured as refugees. ‘Valid for travel’ therefore stands as a collaborative document that depicts the experience of migration, covering aspects of the Syrians’ pre departure life, their journey and their current liminal status.