As the drownings in the Mediterranean Sea sadly continue, I hope that Sea Prayer helps keep alive the memory of Alan Kurdi, and that it serves as reminder of the unfathomable desperation that forces families to risk all they have in search of hope and safety on another shore, across the waters.
We all have an individual duty to let our friends, our families, our communities, our governments know we support refugees, that we want to see the expansion of safe, legal pathways for those in need of international protection, and when, if they should reach our own doorstep in search of safety and sanctuary that we welcome them. We can show solidarity #WithRefugees in so many different ways. Please take action today.
About Sea Prayer
Written in the form of a letter, Sea Prayer is a father’s reflection as he watches over his sleeping son, on the dangerous journey across the sea that lies before them. It is also an account of their life in Homs, Syria, before the war, and of that city’s swift transformation from a home into a deadly war zone. Khaled first read Sea Prayer at a private UNHCR fundraising event in New York.
Sea Prayer was first produced for public release as a virtual reality experience in collaboration with UNHCR, the Guardian and Google. It was released on 1 September 2017 to mark the second anniversary of the death of three year old Syrian refugee Alan Kurdi (2 September). On the same day UNHCR released updated figures on the number of deaths at sea from others attempting to make the desperate journey to find safety in Europe with a call to action for governments, civil society, the public and the private sector to stand together #WithRefugees by supporting and expanding safe and alternative legal pathways for refugees.
Sea Prayer was published in September 2018 (print and e-book), with illustrations by Dan Williams, to mark the third anniversary of the death of Alan Kurdi. English-language teaching resources on Sea Prayer are available here.
Proceeds from the sale of Sea Prayer will go to The Khaled Hosseini Foundation and UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency to help fund life-saving support and build better futures for refugees around the world.