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From Syria to Australia, an Assyrian Student's Journey
By Bella Richards
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Ashorina Korko
From hearing the sound of bombs every day on her way to university and covering her head whenever out in public, to now safely getting an education and following her dream career, AshorinaKorko, 26, has been able to find a home at Liverpool and start her journey again.

Ashorina is an Assyrian woman who migrated to Australia a few years ago after seeking refuge from the war in her country. She then moved to Liverpool in 2018 and is doing the things she only dreamed about when she was younger.

According to Liverpool Council, between 2011 and 2016 a total of 25,393 people, or 44.6 per cent, of those who migrated to Australia settled in Liverpool City.

After searching for some time, Ashorina found a community home at InspireChurch, which gave her the opportunity to use her skills in accounting, slowly enabling her to get a full-time job. "You need people who trust in you and who give you opportunities in order to be able express yourself and show your skills," Ashorina said. "We started getting involved with the church and we found it was easy for us because they gave us the opportunity to be involved in several areas. I did ushering. I went to their events because I was doing accounting. And I asked to volunteer."

She felt she could express herself and her culture because the people in the church community didn't judge her and didn't care where she was from but welcomed her into their family.

The senior pastor of Inspire Church, Pastor John McMartin, who was the previous state president of Australian Christian Churches, began to build the church more than 35 years ago.

From the start, he wanted it to be a place that would accept all types of cultures. "There's no protocol, it's just like an extended family -- our extended family is different cultures," he said.

Many different cultures are represented at Inspire Church which works to accommodate them all, hosting cultural nights and setting up dedicated cultural groups to keep people connected.

I was born here, but I won't have only people who were born here at the front, Pastor McMartin said. "We welcome all different cultures here, for serving and for leading. We're not mono in our expression."

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