A special documentary – “Ireland’s Refugee Hotel” featuring the 240 Syrian refugees who have come to live in the former Abbeyfield Hotel in Ballaghaderreen will go to air tonight Thursday 2nd November.
The documentary also features 21 year old Ghassan who left his parents behind in Syria but is accompanied by his grandmother, aunt, niece and nephew.
Accoring to the producers “Many of the townsfolk are determined to give them a warm welcome and local children have made a welcome wall at the hotel, but others are concerned – Ballaghadereen is traditional and staunchly Roman Catholic and there are fears that the influx of refugees could overwhelm the town and its already overstretched resources.”
“As the refugees arrive and settle in, we get to know some of the townsfolk who have decided to lend a hand – Hotel Manager Jackie who gave up a career in luxury hotels and now runs the Abbeyfield and helps the refugees to acclimatise, and Mary who runs the local clothes shop, and believes the Irish history of emigration behoves them to open their doors to the refugees.”
“We follow the ups and downs of the asylum process as Ghassan and his family adjust to Ireland but realize they may never see loved ones again. And we discover if the town and the refugees can put any differences they may have behind them and find a shared humanity.”
Ireland’s Refugee Hotel will be broadcast on TV3 on Thursday 2nd November at 9pm