Malin Pettersen

Posted on December 10 2015

WOMEN WE LOVE

Malin Pettersen

Artist and Activist

Malin Pettersen is a Woman We Love. She is a true inspiration, artistically and politically. She is the lead singer in the band Lucky Lips and has also been one of the leading contributors to the non-profit organisation ‘Refugees Welcome to Norway.’ In the second of our Woman We Love series, she lets us into her home and tells us her engaging story. 

 It all started a couple of months ago. Everything was at ease; life was going by, but suddenly society, as we know it, changed dramatically. The refugee crisis arrived in Europe, the war in Syria had caught up with us, and the safest place in the world; Norway, was touched by thousands of people in search of refuge.
Malin immediately called the newly founded organisation; ‘Refugees welcome to Norway’ asking how she could help.

What made you react?
My very first reaction was not an intellectual one, but an emotional one. And it was when I had the emotional reaction again and again that I understood that I simply had to react.
People often think that helping takes time, money or resources. Although, as Malin explains, helping in itself is easy, and no contribution is too small. The organization is active in the social media, and here one can see where and when they need help. It could be something as simple as picking up leftover food at a restaurant and delivering it to the immigration centre. You can go down to your local immigration centre with a deck of cards, and make the atmosphere a bit nicer for the people that have travelled far and in horrific conditions.
How has this crisis impacted your life and way of thinking?
I’ve realized that the abstract distance between people different from me and myself is something constructed. Even though our culture and perhaps religion is different, we’re all people. And a smile is still a smile; a tear is till a tear. The distance will only become bigger if we start excluding each other.
The month of November has arrived, the crisis is still current, and the immigration centres are as full as ever. Malin explains how she’s afraid that the interest from people will render as the newsworthiness of the crisis goes down, and she establishes that without the volunteers, the situation would be a lot different today.
We are dependant on volunteers in order to handle this situation the best. Sign up at Refugees Welcome to Norway or your local volunteer organization, and see how you can help today and in the future.

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