Concert at "Centre Communautaire Maritime" in Molenbeek (15th june 2017) : Link

Here are some pictures by our volunteer Fanny Gosset :

Evening event: concert by “Syrians Got Talent” and Middle-Eastern buffet (8-12-2016).


RANA (Refugees Are Not Alone) had the pleasure of inviting guests to a rather different soirée on 8 December at the famous house of the painter Marcel Hastir.


Syrians Got Talent, a group of Syrian refugee musicians in Belgium, played some of the great classics of Middle-Eastern music. Expert cooks from refugee families prepared delicious food. We discussed the immigrants’ positive experiences but also the serious problems facing these new arrivals in Belgium.


You can find some of the words and images from this event on cctvnews, a report which was shown again on other channels, such as umangtv (Pakistani TV).


Here are some other pictures by the photographer Elio Germani:


  “Syrians Got Talent” (first edition)



With the aim of supporting asylum seekers’ social integration, RANA organised (on 31 March 2016) the concert “Syrians Got Talent” at the Marcel Hastir atelier (51, Rue du Commerce,1000 Brussels). Five Syrian refugees sang Brel and displayed their talents on the Arabic lute (the oud), the kanun, violin and guitar. They also described their experiences to an eager audience (in French and Dutch, which they have been learning since their arrival in Europe, but also in Arabic and English).


The event was attended by more than 200 people.

        Family B


This is a family of Palestinian refugees who have arrived from Lebanon: a father, mother and two children. The father was arrested and placed in a detention centre over 100 kilometres from his family at the request of the Secretary of State. It then transpired that he had been unjustly arrested and interned.


RANA helped the family with:

- Contacts with a lawyer

- Support for the mother and children (visits, donated items, a stay in Brussels, reimbursement of travel expenses, going with them to visit the father)

- Visits to the father and moral support

- Assistance for the mother with administrative procedures

- Contacts with a psychologist for the daughter and accompanying her to the first session

- Help with a rent deposit.


They have now been given their status as refugees and are living in Geel. The father has created a volunteer group which wants to link up with RANA: it is active in the Geel area. In the photo (from left to write): Achraf (member of RANA), the son, the father and the mother. The family is explaining its project to RANA during a meeting at their house.


    Family O


This is an Iraqi family consisting of the father, mother and three children, including a one-year-old baby. They were forced to leave their town following threats and the kidnapping of their 8-year-old son.


How did we help this family?

- There was a risk of them having to sleep on the streets. They were welcomed and offered accommodation in the flat of an MEP who has been living with a friend since 2015 so as to free up his own flat

- They were given material support and reimbursed for some travel expenses

- They received several visits at a FEDASIL centre (moral and administrative support)

- Because the mother was suffering from depression, the family stayed in the flat several times to get some reprieve from conditions in the refugee shelter

- We directed them to other groups supporting refugees (in particular, La Platforme Citoyenne de Soutien aux Réfugiés)

- We facilitated contacts between them and certain representatives of the media.



M.K. is a young Syrian refugee who left his country at the age of 17 on receiving the call-up for military service. It is obvious that doing military service in Syria has other implications than is the case in Western Europe....


What action did RANA take?

- “Buddying” and advice on administrative procedures and on resuming his studies

- Getting in touch with a group of young people with whom he could share his passion: photography

- Advice for his interview with the CGRA (Commissariat Général aux Réfugiés et aux Apatrides)

- Assistance with finding accommodation

- Help with his rent deposit

- Several calls to find out how he was getting on, including help when needed: not forgetting that this is a young man uprooted from his home environment with an overriding need for moral support.