When we read an article about a refugee’s journey, we don’t get the same impression as when we actually talk to the person who took the steps to flee his country for another place.
I visited the Association Pierre Claver, a Paris school for "demandeurs d'asil" (asylum seekers), to interview Rahman Amiri, 30, a refugee from Afghanistan. We spent several hours talking about the six-month journey he took after he fled his country, traveling through Pakistan, Iran, Turkey, Greece and Italy by car, boat, truck, train and walking.
Talking with with Amiri opened my eyes on the experience millions of people have gone through to get to Europe from Afghanistan. Even though Amiri's experience took place several years ago, I got the impression that he remembered every detail. He was really open and easy to talk to; we spoke in French, the one language we share. I could not speak Dari or Pashto and Amiri is not fluent in English.
The best way to visualize a journey is in a map, not in words. So I decided to use StoryMap JS, a tool that makes it easy to understand a journey.
Using this digital tool made me realise what really happened during the approximately 6,975 kilometers that Amiri traveled from his city to mine.