On Monday 23 June, the Ceremonial Mayor of Salford, Councillor Christine Hudson, and her sister Lynda, the Mayoress of Salford, members of the Salford Interfaith Network and special guest speakers, along with pupils, staff, and members of the public gathered at the Albion Academy, London Street, Salford for the beginning of the school’s Spirit of Salford week. Pupils across year groups had created artwork and art installations that showed different aspects of life in Salford, which celebrate the diversity and vibrancy of the city. Also on display, presented by the students, were plans created by them for an innovative multi-faith space on the grounds of the academy.
As this event just followed Refugee Week, and Albion is home to pupils from a variety of nations, the Academy planned in conjunction with the Salford Interfaith Network a segment called ‘Salford Stories’, in which four local residents shared their experiences of having arrived in this area as refugees. The four men, Mr. Werner Lachs, born in Germany, Mr. Paul Oshokoya, born in Nigeria, Mr. Treasure Sithole, born in Zimbabwe, & Mr Sefat Tanahy, born in Afghanistan, were interviewed by Rev. Daniel Burton, Rector of the All-Saints Team and active committee member of Salford Interfaith Network. Though the four had come from different places with unique circumstances, the audience also heard similarities in their stories, which included the warm welcome they all received from the people of Salford.
At the conclusion of hearing these powerful stories, everyone was invited to look at the students’ displays, as well as sample a buffet of foods from around the world, prepared by the families of Albion pupils.