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February 12, 2021 28 min

This episode of Sparks of Hope features Waterford sisters-in-law Sami and Ciamh Alexander in conversation about difference, similarity, racism, love, community and the need for all of us to relearn the value of ‘minding each other.’  

Sami’s background features a mix of ethnicities and cultures that range from Australian and American to Egyptian and African. In contrast, Ciamh was born and raised in Ireland by white, Irish parents.  Ciamh explores with Sami some of her experiences as a woman with a multi-ethnic background and also chats with her about how she finds living in Ireland.

Because Sami looks white she understands what it is to be afforded white privilege, but she has also experienced having that privilege revoked when her ethnic background becomes an issue. This sudden, unexpected racism from people she already knows and trusts carries with it an additional layer of shock and betrayal.  An insightful discussion about the existence of racism in almost every country - including Ireland - includes a look at the ways this insidious problem destroys the potential of societies as well as individuals, and also explores the solutions to this issue.

In this wide-ranging chat, Sami and Ciamh also discuss creating community gardens with their neighbours during the pandemic, the vital contribution of diversity to social well-being and the lessons we can learn from indigenous communities about caring for each other. With a clear view of the problems besetting our societies, Ciamh and Sami have an equally clear vision for the steps we can all take to solve these problems and create safe, equal and inclusive communities that can really flourish.

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