Integration. Syrian Refugees invited by the Mayor of Palermo

Rome (NEV), April 30, 2017 – “To know Palermo starting from the City Hall: everyone’s house”. In the end of April, the wish expressed by three Syrian families became true. These families left Lebanon’s refugees camps and reached Italy thanks to the “humanitarian corridors” promoted by the Federation of Protestant Churches in Italy (FCEI), the Waldensian Board and the Community of St. Egidio. They are now hosted in the Centro Diaconale ‘La Noce’, the historical Waldensian Institute active in youth and social work since 1975.

Leoluca Orlando, Palermo’s Mayor, welcomed the Syrian families, accompanied by the director and the operators of the Center, in his Office. The Mayor himself then led the unusual Waldensian-Syrian delegation through the rooms were the political life of the city takes place. “Palermo is their new home – said Anna Ponente, director of the Centre -. Welcoming refugees is a responsibility on one hand, but on the other it also is a mutual process of availability and opening to knowing each other, those who arrive and those who receive. This is why the Syrian families wanted this meeting. We were happy to accompany them and grateful to the Mayor Orlando for sharing their and our desire”.