Impulse: Millions are on the move. Wars, natural disasters, poverty and political oppression are forcing them on the road, but some are also motivated by curiosity and a desire for adventure. Employment, family and educational opportunities are the main reasons for migrations, the most powerful factors in our unstable geopolitical environment.
The experience of crossing the border and starting a new life is not a new thing in human history. Rijeka used to be the departure point for emigrants moving to the Americas in the early 20th century. As a port city, an important maritime centre for Central Europe, Rijeka was witness to a massive wave of emigration to the New World. Once known as Fiume, it has always been a city balancing between Italian and Croatian influence. After World War II, a period that was a huge turning point for the city and for Europe, more than fifty thousand citizens, mostly Italians, moved away as part of the so called Istrian exodus. The people of Rijeka became migrant workers in Northern Europe, seeking better jobs and better conditions. At the same time, Rijeka became an important immigration destination in the region because of the growing industry.
Rijeka knows the story of diversity and the loss of home well.