Voices of Courage
Awards Luncheon

May 3, 2018

2011 Luncheon Refugee Honorees

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ZRINKA BRALO

Voices of Courage Honoree Zrinka Bralo
Photo by Beth Crosland

Zrinka Bralo was a journalist for several years in Bosnia, spending five years at the National Radio in Sarajevo. After war broke out, she reported from Sarajevo, alongside some of the world’s leading war correspondents.  As the conflict escalated, Zrinka sought asylum in the United Kingdom. She was at first refused and fought deportation for three years, finally winning the right to stay in the country. To this day, she is a fierce advocate for asylum-seekers, and  set up the National Coalition of Anti-deportation Campaigns in London.

Since 2001, Zrinka has served as head of the Migrant and Refugee Communities Forum in London, which reaches 5,000 people annually. She has led several successful campaigns in London on behalf of refugees.

In northern Bosnia, she helped found an organization called Most Mira (Bridge to Peace), which hosts an annual arts festival for children born into segregation and facing postwar trauma.

STELLA MKILIWANE

Voices of Courage Honoree Stella Mkiliwane

Stella Mkiliwane is of the minority Ndebele tribe in Zimbabwe and after being abducted, interrogated and threatened by security agents, she fled to South Africa in 2007. Soon after, she began volunteering with the Refugee Ministries Centre (RMC). A family therapist and social worker by training, she played a significant role in humanitarian relief and protection in response to the wave of violence against foreigners in South Africa in May 2008, when approximately 100,000 families were displaced. She mobilized relief and resources for those displaced and later carried out assessment work of those living in temporary shelters.

Now the director of operations of the RMC, she has instilled a “zero tolerance of corruption” policy for organizational and governmental staff alike. Not wanting to be restrained to a desk job, Stella also continues to offer one-on-one counseling to refugees and asylum seekers at a Walk-in Centre run by RMC in Johannesburg.