On February 10, 2017, the Refugee Solidarity Rally took place at the Oneida Square Roundabout in Utica, NY. The rally’s purpose was to stand not only with the refugee population in Utica, but with those globally who have been affected by recent national events as well.

“Being a participant in the rally meant a lot to me. I was able to connect with many of my friends based upon a deep-seated passion we all shared. It was reassuring to see many people standing against the bigotry and inhumanity that have filled our social media sources. I was able to chant along side relentless, passionate refugees, peers, and active people who share the same love and resistance for a more welcoming and inclusive society.” – Amar Kassim

“The typical cold Friday evening in Utica last week witnessed a heartwarming spirit of love and community support from hundreds of participants at the Refugee Solidarity Rally. The rally was hosted in an effort to show support for all the refugees affected by the recent events in the country. The Hamilton College Student Assembly organized a bus for a group of Hamilton students to participate at the rally. A cheerful crowd gathered at the Oneida Square Roundabout in Utica carrying slogans like ‘Stand against Racism’, and reciting powerful chants like ‘No ban, no wall’ and ‘Refugees are welcome here’ throughout the evening. The rally marked a meaningful gathering of people from various groups coming together for a common cause… Everyone was kind and friendly indeed. The organizers and volunteers distributed slogans, hats and hot coffee to stand through the brutal weather, and to stand in solidarity for all the refugees, who are a vibrant part of our community.” – Lilly Yangchen

Photo courtesy of Lilly Yangchen