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    “All the refugees I have photographed started their journey in unbearable circumstances. People from different ethnicities and cultures, people w… Read More
    “All the refugees I have photographed started their journey in unbearable circumstances. People from different ethnicities and cultures, people with diverse backgrounds fleeing armed conflict and persecution. I can’t even begin to imagine what they have lived through. I can only condemn the reasons which have forced them from their homes and to leave the life they knew everything. In our limited time together, I saw their hope for a new beginning. For some this new life continues in Bulgaria, but most of them have moved to Western and Northern Europe. I am grateful to every person who trusted me to document their journey across the Border of Hope” Read Less
    Published:
Border of Hope
 
Countries have borders. Hope doesn’t.
 
Refugees have only one choice - flee across international borders.
 
Every day wars and human rights abuses drive thousands of women, men, unaccompanied children, and families to take dangerous, sometimes perilous journeys to safety.
 
Around the world, 60 million people need refuge. This is the highest number ever recorded and accelerating fast.
 
While nine out of ten refugees are in the developing world, few reach the safety of Europe.
 
Over the last two years, Bulgaria received 25,000 asylum-seekers. This exhibition aims to show the courage, determination, and resilience of some of them.  These photos were taken between April 2013 and June 2015 by Dobrin Kashavelov for the UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR.
 
 
“All the refugees I have photographed started their journey in unbearable circumstances. People from different ethnicities and cultures, people with diverse backgrounds fleeing armed conflict and persecution. I can’t even begin to imagine what they have lived through. I can only condemn the reasons which have forced them from their homes and to leave the life they knew everything.
 
In our limited time together, I saw their hope for a new beginning. For some this new life continues in Bulgaria, but most of them have moved to Western and Northern Europe.
 
I am grateful to every person who trusted me to document their journey across the Border of Hope
 
Dobrin Kashavelov 
A Syrian boy tries to start a fire to keep warm at the refugee center in Harmanli. There wasn’t any heating, hot water, or electricity in the centre at that time. The smoke makes him cough. December 2013
 
 
A gymnasium turned into a detention centre for new illegal arrivals. In late 2013 up to 700 people were accommodated here by Border Police in Elhovo. Families were separated from single men by cages. It is no longer in use. November 2013
Ahmad from Afghanistan eats his lunch with his back to the open plan room which several months earlier hosted over 70 single men.March 2014
A woman prays in her room at the Vrazhdebna reception centre. December 2013
Syrian father shows how he used to calm his son, from the noise of the bombing in their hometown. 
/UNHCR/ April 2013
A Syrian boy who lost his leg by a bomb shrapnel poses for a photo. The photo was taken in the Pastrogor centre. April 2013
A 4 year old boy Aland Yousf plays with his friend in the buidling of the Temporary accommodation centre
in Vrajdebna. /UNHCR/ December 2013
A refugee boy starring at the renovation of the rooms in the Temporary accommodation centre in Voenna Rampa. /UNHCR/ April 2014
Juliana Isam, 6-years-old refugee girl from Syria stands alone in the room with her plush toy at the reception center in Kovachevtsi. / UHNCR / October 2013
A refugee girl poses for a portrait in the corridors of the Temporary accommodation centre in Voenna Rampa. /UNHCR/ March 2014
Refugees are cleaning the corridor in the Temporary accommodation centre in Voenna Rampa, Sofia.
/UNHCR/ December 2013
List of exercises in bulgarian language shows that the children of Lubna Hadba go to class in the Temporary accommodation centre in Vrajdebna. /UNHCR/ April 2014
Ammar Taher looks out of his window in his room in the Temporary accommodation centre in Voenna rampa. /UNHCR/ March 2014
A small Syrian boy crawls out of his tent in the Closed container and tent camp in Harmanli.
/UNHCR/ November 2013
Hannan Jendo from Syria and his daughter are siting in the place where once there was their tent house.
After they were accommodated in a room with better conditions in one of the repaired buildings in the camp in Harmanli. Finally they managed to reach Germany where they live now. /UNHCR/ December 2013
A child looks at the camera in the adapted building for the accommodation of refugees in the Closed container and tent camp in Harmanli. /UNHCR/ November 2013
A Syrian boy has his lunch on the floor of the room in the Border police 24 hour holding facilities in Elhovo. /UNHCR/ August 2013
A Syrian mother stays with her children in their tent in the Closed camp in Harmanli. /UNHCR/ November 2013
Adi hid in a cargo truck to rejoin her sister in Germany, but was stopped at the Bulgarian-Turkish border.
/UNHCR/ May 2014
Syrian mother Noha Baghdadi poses for a portrait in the Temporary accommodation centre in Vrajdebna.
/UNHCR/ April 2014
Abdel Razag Yosif, 25 year old refugee from Somalia poses for a portrait at the reception center in Kovachevtsi.
/UHNCR/ October 2013 
Hamza Abdella, 19-year-old refugee from Somalia looks out the window at the reception center in Kovachevtsi. /UHNCR/ October 2013
Kaltum Mohmed, 22 year old woman from Somalia hides her face from the sunlight at refugee center in Kovachevtsi.  /UHNCR/ October 2013
A mother holds her baby inside the adapted building for accommodation of refugees. /UNHCR/ November 2013
25 year old Mohamad Hussain from Syria posed for a portrait in Harmanli Reception centre. He used to translate and assist the foreign journalists who came to document the life of the refugees in Harmanli or Sofia. Now he lives in Germany with the rest of his family. /UNHCR/ April 2014
44 years old Mohamad Halif from Syria poses for a portrait in Pastrogor Transit centre. /UNHCR/ May 2014
Children play around the wire fence in the yard of Pastrogor Transit centre. /UNHCR/ May 2014
Two syrian children on a makeshift swing in Pastrogor Transit Center. /UNHCR/ May 2014
Children pose for a portrait close to the wire fence in the yard of Pastrogor Transit centre. /UNHCR/ May 2014
Syrian woman sits close to the fireplace in front of her closed container house in the refugee camp in Harmanli. /UNHCR/ December 2013
Abdul fled the violence in Syria with his wife and children. His wife, Uaheyda, was later caught crossing the Bulgarian-Serb border without papers and was locked up in a Sofia prison for six months, separated from her family in the Banya reception centre. For the father and four kids, the most important thing they kept with them is Uaheyda’s photograph who they have not seen since February. /UNHCR/ April 2013
in the Temporary accommodation centre in Voenna Rampa most of the refugee families live in a rooms separated from others only with sheets or blankets. /UNHCR/ December 2013
A 4-year-old refugee girl, Asia from Syria looks at the camera in the room where her family is accommodated in Elhovo, Bulgaria. She survived an operation after an accident with a bullet close to her heart.
/UNHCR/ November 2013
A boy runs in the corridor of Pastrogor Transit centre. /UNHCR/ April 2013