Coffee Pod #73: Mariam Issa is an empowered refugee, sharing a story of resilience and imparting the power of community, self-narrative and finding opportunity amid adversity


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By Holly Ransom. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

Landing as a refugee in the upperclass Victorian suburb of Brighton from war-torn Somalia, Mariam Issa shares her thoughts on life, love, community and resilience. Take a moment over coffee to see your world through the eyes of an outsider. You may well be surprised at how the trivial becomes pivotal and conversely, how what we see as critical, can be rendered somewhat absurd.

Mariam interrogates the narratives we tell ourselves and questions who authors our story? She emphasises the tools we need to take back the mastery of our own identity. In looking at the plot lines of the developed world’s women, versus the narrative of the developing world’s women, Mariam wonders about the destruction of Western culture, veiled behind accumulation of material possessions. She suggests the less apparent truth - the loss of communal culture. At a time where harnessing the collective holds great value for workplaces, political movements and community wellbeing, Mariam’s lessons of individual contribution are a rare find.

While Western culture can be quick to dismiss traditions and rituals from abroad, Mariam argues that each of us must improve our listening skills and retain a childlike curiosity. She argues this place of wonder is what activates our ability to tell stories, and therefore to connect humanity. Mariam says, “If you can host someone in your heart, you can host them in your home.” She believes it is the act of listening that gives the power to the story teller. So activate your ear(pod)s, open up your willingness to learn and enjoy a raw CoffeePod from a phenomenal story-teller.

75 episodes