The MILE project (Migrant Integration through Locally designed Experiences) is inviting you to its final event taking place in Brussels on 23-24 November 2023! The event not only presents the end of a two-year journey for our project. It will also provide a moment to reflect on migration experiences and share our experiences with promoting participation and inclusion at the local level.

Together with event participants, speakers and artists from different fields, we will exchange our good practices, lessons learned and stories of inclusion, participation and inclusion. Join us for an evening of theatre and music on Thursday 23 November and a morning of debates and testimonies on Friday 24 November! The event will be catered by We Exist and Iosono Il Piemonte.

The registration for this event has closed. If you wish to attend one of the days, please contact vcotterell@unitee.

Discover the full programme.


Les Polymorphistes will perform a “Forum Theatre” for the MILE final event on Thursday 23 November, a participatory theatre where real-life stories of oppression are co-developed, performed, and solved together with the audience. The show was crafted by a diverse group of 12 individuals, comprising both theatre enthusiasts and professionals, over four months of weekly workshops lead by Hakim Trabelsi, dedicated to promoting diversity and inclusion through the performing arts scene of Brussels.

The Makam Duo was born out of the musical encounter between Mevlüt Akgüngör (ney/reed flute) and Robert Micin (oud). Together they play pieces from the vast repertoire of Ottoman music and the mystical Sufi music. For the MILE final event, they will perform with a special guest, the Ghent-based percussionist, singer and movement artist Hilde De Clercq, creating an immersive musical experience.

Astrid Begenyeza is a socio-cultural project officer at Brussels2030, a non-profit organisation preparing Brussels’ candidacy as European Capital of Culture in 2030. She is in charge of the participation and co-creation projects This is Us.This is Brussels, an artistic and social design project building a human archive with the stories of 1000 Brussels residents, and Speak Up Brussels!, an online platform giving young people a voice. Astrid is also involved in Rebel, a feminist collective in the electronic music sector in Brussels.

Safaa Charafi is an architect and urbanist and the founder of Urban Inclusion, a consulting firm on gender, diversity, and urban development. With a strong academic background and practical qualifications, she brings over 10 years of experience to her field. Safaa’s expertise lies in social research and urban development, with a special focus on gender, migration and intersectionality. Currently a fellow at a Belgian think tank on economic and social affairs and a project officer for UNOPS, Safaa is also Belgium’s 40under40, entrepreneur, lecturer and speaker, sharing valuable insights on intersectional urban practices.

Adem Kumcu is the President and a founding member of UNITEE, which is a European network of ‘New European’ entrepreneurs and professionals with a migrant background, and a partner of the MILE project. An active promoter of migrant, social and cultural entrepreneurship, Adem coaches and advises on business and diversity-related issues and has been an advisor to the Municipality of Utrecht and to various Commissions of the Dutch Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Education, Culture and Economic Affairs.

Professor Monder Ram OBE is the Director of the Centre for Research in Ethnic Minority Entrepreneurship (CREME), partner of the MILE project. He is a leading authority on small business and ethnic minority entrepreneurship research and has published widely on the subject, and has extensive experience of working in and acting as a consultant to small and ethnic minority businesses.

André Sobczak is Secretary General of Eurocities, the largest network of European cities. With 20 years of experience in sustainability and eight years in city council, most recently as Vice-President of the Nantes Metropolitan Area, André is known for driving positive change, promoting equality and diversity, and launching impactful initiatives including #NegoTraining giving women free training on negotiating better wages, and Fairwork, establishing a ranking of working conditions in food delivery services. 

Tamara Stojanovic is project manager at the City of Mechelen, a Belgian city that is recognised internationally as a model of the successful integration of immigrants in general and refugees in particular. Tamara coordinates two European projects that promote the inclusion of migrants in local policy-making: MUST-a-Lab and EMBRACE. Tamara previously worked as a policy officer for multilingualism for the Flemish Agency for Civic Integration.

Bryn Watkins is communications and project manager at, a non-profit organisation mandated by the Brussels-Capital Region to build bridges with the city’s European and international organisations. He manages Brussels Voice, the democratic participation platform for International Brusselers, which recently completed its second cycle.


We Exist is an organisation created and managed by Syrian people who have lived through the war in their home country and, after arriving in Brussels, wanted to help other newcomers by creating job opportunities for them. They have been successfully doing this through We Exist since 2016, using positive food experiences to share the flavours of their childhood and celebrating diversity and multiculturalism. We Exist is built on mutual respect towards every person regardless of ethnicity, religion, race, sexual or gender identity.

Iosono Il Piemonte is the official enogastronomic partner of the Italian region of Piemonte in Brussels. It is a place where people and organisations from all over the world meet each other. During the last three years, over 30.000 people have tasted the flavours of the region.


Day 1 (23 November)

18:00 – 19:00 – Arrival and Welcome Drink

19:00 – 20:45 – Theatre of the Oppressed – Les Polymorphistes

20:45 – 22:00 – Live Concert – Makam Duo

Catering by We Exist

Day 2 (24 November)

09:00 – 09:30 – Arrival and Coffee

09:30 – 10:00 – Opening remarks | Advancing migrant inclusion and civic participation: What are the EU’s and local priorities?

André Sobczak, Secretary General, Eurocities

Adem Kumcu, Ph.D, President, UNITEE

10:00 – 11:15 – Interactive session | Migrant Participation in Practice: Sharing first-hand experiences from the local level

New Women Connectors

11:15 – 11:45 – Coffee Break

11:45 – 12:50 – Panel Debate | What are the key ingredients for creating local ecosystems of change, co-creation, and migrant inclusion?

Astrid Begenyeza, Cultural Project Officer, Brussels2030
Safaa Charafi, Architect and Urbanist | Gender, Diversity & Inclusion Expert
Tamara Stojanovic, Project Manager, Municipality of Mechelen, MUST-a-Lab project
Bryn Watkins, Communications and Project Manager,

Moderator: Monder Ram, Director of the Centre for Research in Ethnic Minority Entrepreneurship (CREME) at Aston University in Birmingham

12:50 – 13:00 – Closing Remarks

13:00 – 14:00 – Light Lunch

Catering by Iosono Il Piemonte.