Compass Project – Birkbeck College, University of London (Eng)

Anna Konik is a Polish video artist who has been collaborating with the Compass Project in London since 2018. The project aims to give young asylum seekers from 15 different countries (including Sri Lanka, Ethiopia, Albania) the opportunity for one year of free study at Birkbeck College, University of London. Many of them have previously studied but had to interrupt their studies when they fled their home countries.

Anna is working with a group of seven students from Compass Project on a film ’Eight Days a Week’.
What happens when you open university doors to people from all over the world, who are thirsty for education but have been blocked from accessing it?
What happens to them, what happens to the university?

The film addresses issues such as being a refugee, the flight itself, women’s rights, education, living in another country. The film will premiere in June 2021 during Refuge Week in London. The Book Aid will be presented in the information material about the film.

As a complement to the film, Anna is writing a book documenting her work with the film.
The book will contain interviews with the project participants. It tells i.e. how the refugees were forced to break through institutional barriers to participate in higher education.
The focus is on raising public awareness of the obstacles that exist in the current systems and how it affects the security and well-being of refugees.

More information:


Motivation: The project is perceived as a praiseworthy project. Although it is not really in line with The Book Aid’s purpose, we want to support it. This is still about finding a way and a language to express oneself in a new country. The project also expands The Book Aid’s operations.