Australian singer-songwriter Missy Higgins has released a song and animated video that pays tribute to the plight of Syrian refugees.
It is called 'Oh Canada' and powerfully captures the story of three-year-old Syrian boy Alan Kurdi, whose body washed ashore after fleeing for Canada with his brother and parents in September last year.
"Like most people, the photo of little Alan Kurdi being carried out of the water shook me to my core," Higgins wrote on Facebook.
"We often read about the tragic plight of refugees but I think that picture exposed us to the reality in such a raw way that the truth became inescapable."
The song begins with an image of the soldier who lifted the young boy from the beach, undercut by news reports that echoed across the world. Higgins then moves to tell the story from his father's perspective.
"But at night he said a quiet prayer into the wind: Oh Canada, if you can hear me now, won't you open up your arms towards the sea?" sings Higgins.
"Oh Canada, if can help me out, all I ever wanted was a safe place for my family."
The video for 'Oh Canada' is now LIVE on my Facebook page! This song means a lot to me, I hope you like it. Missy X pic.twitter.com/9yreYiQlhj— Missy Higgins (@missyhiggins) February 18, 2016
The song is matched perfectly by a video created by stark ravings productions that uses child drawings and animations to pen the story of the Kurdi family.
"I first heard the song as an iPhone-recorded demo that Missy sent me. I was driving while I listened to it and had to pull over," Director Natasha Pincus told The Guardian Australia.
"The video concept needed to bring the song and Alan's story to life sensitively, boldly, but also without overwhelming either of them."
For Higgins, she simply aimed to "tell a story".
"It's not preaching anything in particular, it's simply my attempt to make sense out of senselessness.
"If the song inspires anyone to do something on behalf of refugees - to speak up for their rights and to push back against those who seek to inflame our fears and prejudices -- then I think that would be best of all."
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