Refugee Journeys: Identity, Intersectionality, and Integration, a board game

An analysis of Refugee Journeys: Identity, Intersectionality, and Integration (Lam, 2017), a board game for Canadians interested in learning about the experience of newcomers to this country.

What is, and how does this board game work?

“It started with a home printer and an old copy of Snakes-and-Ladders. Experiences of integration gleaned from research, from conversations with newcomers, and from media were collected and turned into ‘Experience Cards’ including:

  • difficulties with language learning
  • celebrating a child’s first friend
  • needing transportation in a rural area
  • trying to find food from home.

“A refugee student drew artwork for the gameboard, and a game designer, Rob Gosselin of Birdlight Games, gave professional insights to transform it into a product that could be ordered online.

“The end result is a game that is complex and engaging. It puts players into the shoes of a newcomer, moving forward or backward along the pathway of integration. Every player’s path is unique. Players receive an identity card detailing background and other aspects of identity. The journey of integration will be different depending on the cards drawn”.

If you’ve played this board game, immigrantchildren.ca would be interested to hear about your experience.