“The Boy With Two Hearts is a family story, is a love story, it’s a story of a family leaving their home, their belongings, their identity… everything behind because of simply speaking out for equality and women’s rights”. Click to watch the full clip below.
I was honoured and excited to interview Hamed and Hessam Amiri, co-authors and playwrights of The Boy With Two Hearts. The book follows the true story of the Amiri family traveling from Afghanistan to the UK in search of safety after their family was threatened for calling for women’s equality. Here are my top takeaways from the interview:
- The importance of family during difficult times. For Hamed, Hessam and Hussein, leaving their home at a young age was not easy. But Hessam said the three of them “always looked at each other and said, okay we have to be calm and strong” for our family. Despite losing everything, they had each other, and at the end of the day, that’s what really matters.
- Life doesn’t become easy once you receive your leave to remain or refugee status. Life for refugees once they arrive in the UK doesn’t become easy. There are many barriers that must be faced, including language barriers, non-recognition of qualifications, lack of work experience and many more. That’s why our work is important, we’re Breaking Barriers so every refugee can access meaningful employment and build a new life.
- The loss of a childhood. Once Hamed realised why he was leaving, he had to “stop being a child” and grow up. This is the norm for refugee children who flee their homes with their family. In the process, they leave behind friends and any sense of normality, and are forced to take on responsibility that should not be placed on a child. Listening to this made me appreciate the childhood I had.
“The Boy With Two Hearts” can be purchased on Amazon, or you can order it at your local bookstore. Visit The National Theater Live where you can watch reruns of the play until the 14th December 2023. If you want to support refugees into meaningful employment, find out how you can get involved through the link below.