Australians Reverse Refugee Journey (What is life really like for refugees)

IN Taboo / Divergent

A life-changing experiment for people with strong political and personal views ‘against’ Refugees, get taken on a “reverse” refugee journey for one month to see what life is really living as a refugee.

 Update: 23rd May 2016 – Looks like the YouTube videos have been deleted (and SBS has moved it to be an “Online by Demand” service on their website, which they charge for)… you can see the best snippets from each of the episodes though on their YouTube channel here: 

Go Back to Where You Came From – Documentary Series:

Series 1: Episode 1
Six ordinary Australians embark on a reverse refugee journey.
The Australians agree to challenge their preconceived notions about asylum seekers and refugees by living like refugees for 25 days. They move in with real refugees building a new life in Australia, before taking a perilous journey to unknown shores on a leaky boat. [YouTube Link]

Series 1: Episode 2
The Australians experience the life of a Burmese refugee in Malaysia.
By moving in with Burmese refugees, the Australians are confronted by the harsh realities of their daily struggle to survive. As they forge emotional bonds, the Australians are shocked to learn the Burmese are in constant fear of arrest. During a midnight immigration raid it becomes clear why. [YouTube Link]

Series 1: Episode 3
The journey concludes in some of the world’s deadliest places.
Continuing their reverse refugee journey, the Australians travel to Kenya and Jordan to live as refugees. In Kenya, they discover the daily struggle to survive in one of the world’s biggest refugee camps, while in Jordan, they navigate life in its dire slums. Unexpectedly, the Australians are offered a chance to travel all the way to two of the world’s most dangerous cities: Goma in the Congo and Baghdad, Iraq. Will they take on the challenge? [YouTube Link]

Series 1: The Response
The participants reunite to continue the conversation around refugees.
Host Anton Enus will join the participants Adam, Gleny, Raye, Raquel, Darren, Roderick and their family and friends for a forum event that will continue the important conversation around refugees. [YouTube Link]

The Leaky Boats (Documentary)
A moving documentary about how the Australian Government used the Refugee Boats as a mechanism to boost it’s standing in the Polls during the election to clinch a victory and keep John Howard in Parliament.

Bloody Unaustralian
A feature documentary that examines how Australia went from being the Lucky Country to a country that persecutes desperate asylum seekers (they are still seeking funding to create this film – here)

Bloody Unaustralian from eva orner on Vimeo.

ABC Reports

These Documentaries on the ABC website won’t let me “embed” the videos:

Asylum – a Report on what happens within Detention Centres using hidden cameras and secret interviews. 2011

even death didnt want me

No Advantage – Going inside Australia’s Offshore Processing Centres. With Staff interviews & Hidden Cameras. 2013

no advantage

Go Back to Where You Came From – Documentary Series continues with 6 different people; this time, well-known celebrities embark on the social experiment of seeing through the eyes of a refugee:

Series 2: Episode 1
Six prominent Australians move in with resettled refugees and asylum seekers in Melbourne, before finding themselves heading for the war torn homelands of their hosts.

Series 2: Episode 2
The Australians experience life in two of the world’s most violent and desperate countries, Somalia and Afghanistan.

Series 2: Episode 3
Following the people smuggling route, the six Australians reunite in Indonesia before becoming ‘boat people’ themselves bound for the notorious Christmas Island Detention Centre.

Sorry Asylum Seekers #NotInMyName

Penny (
Penny (

Who are we? What are we doing here? What is the meaning of life? Penny is a truth-seeker, ever-questioning, ever-learning, ever-researching, ever delving further and deeper down the rabbit hole. This site is a legacy of sorts, a place to collect thoughts, notes, book summaries, whilst providing a searchable archive to easily lookup and reference.

One Comment

  1. M Harvey says:

    Hi, I read your blog. Wonderful, keep-up the good work! Thank you very very much.

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