The six nominees. Photo: courtesy of UAF

UAF Award: four of the six nominees come from Syria


Six university graduates with a refugee background are competing for the 2021 UAF Award. The prize is given by the Foundation for Refugee Students (UAF in the Dutch acronym). Four of the nominees come from Syria.

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The organisation aims to draw attention to talented refugees by awarding this annual prize. “It requires a lot of courage and tenacity to flee your country and start over again in an unfamiliar environment”, says UAF director Mardjan Seighali, from her own experience. She adds that very few refugees get the opportunity to show what they are capable of. “The nominees for the UAF Award are living proof that you can achieve a great deal if you get such a chance.” 

Although the UAF supports people from many different countries, four of the six nominees are from Syria. That is no coincidence, says UAF spokesman Jasper Vink. Since 2014, many Syrian refugees have come to the Netherlands and a relatively large number of them already completed higher education.

Curious about who the nominees are? They all introduce themselves on the UAF website, where you can also cast your vote. The winner will be announced on November 4. He or she will be given access to the training programme of their choice, worth up to four thousand euros.

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