I Escaped

What if women refugees were our perfect role models to look up to?

The North Face is fanatical about exploration, encouraging young women to go out and discover themselves. But if we think about it, exploration stems from the desire to break away from the familiarity. On a more extreme level, it technically means “escaping” from that familiarity. Who might be the unsung examples of this notion? Women refugees.

Facing the unimaginable hardship, crossing borders and oceans, battling days and nights on a rocky trail to a brighter destination – all to flee from bombs, bullets, tyrants, and their crumbling beloved homelands – refugee women are true warriors, “to be called a refugee is the opposite of an insult; it is a badge of strength, courage, and victory”, and they are a perfect example of how “escaping” can change lives.

And this act of “escaping” deeply resonates with our modern society, where thousands of women are trapped in a soul-destructive job, in a toxic relationship, or in an abusive family.

So, we encourage every girl to not bear with pains, to run away, to free their souls, and to escape from whatever is imprisoning them – and life can take another turn from here, just like how it did with these refugee women.



I escaped.

I escaped from the fear that wrestled with my mind by day.
I escaped from the nightmares and the tear-soaked pillows by night.
I escaped from the bruises the wounds and the pains.
I escaped from the loud thuds and the yells and the screams.
I escaped from the little corner where I hid myself.
I escaped from the final thought that “things will never change”.

And of course, I was scared.
Because hey, I escaped.
I escaped from what was once a happy land.
I escaped from the objects that carried endless happy memories.
I escaped from the face I dearly loved.
I escaped from the familiarity.
I escaped from the identity I never dared to think I would escape from.
And I escaped, from the slightest beam of hope that “things will change”.

But hey, I escaped from being torn, broken.
And I escaped, for the future of my daughter.
She did not deserve to belong there, and neither did I.
So I ran to a new place,
a new place of sunshine,
of smiles,
a new place that will hopefully welcome me,
to start all over again.

And, it was scary at first,
because hey,
I escaped.

But a coward never chooses to escape. A warrior does.

Woman 1: I’m Zalka Alsaleh.
Woman 2: and I’m Hannah Lee.

Quynh Tran _ Scriptwriter, Video Editor
Hajra Tariq _ Art Director

David Stadtmüller _ Miami Ad School Berlin