ORDINARY Tasmanians will have the opportunity to hear extraordinary refugee stories at a University of Tasmania forum tonight .
Iranian, Burmese and Sierra Leonian refugees will tell their stories at a forum called The Refugee Experience at the Stanley Burbury Theatre.
Organised by the UTAS School of Government and Tasmanian senator Lisa Singh, the forum aims to provide the community with an understanding of the decision to seek refuge in Australia.
Burmese man Eh Eh Tin will speak of his flight from Burma to Thailand and then to Tasmania. Mr Tin belongs to the Karen ethnic minority, who have suffered persecution from the Burmese Government.
Mr Tin's village lay right in the middle of the fighting.
"I can't go back because of the killing and fighting," he said.
Mr Tin was a teacher in his home country and is studying information technology in Hobart. He has lived in Tasmania for 4 1/2 years with his wife and three children, two of whom were born here.
He admitted when he was asked by Senator Singh to speak at the forum he said he was very, nervous.
"I have never done public speaking before," he said.