"Every human being on the Earth deserves to have a proper life, a permanent life. For me, it's like, if I have tomorrow, I'll be happy."

 – Zaki Haidari, in 'Temporary'

The Kaldor Centre's award-winning storytelling project ‘Temporary’ reveals – in long-form stories, podcasts, art and photography – the lives of people who came to Australia seeking refuge, and the laws that entangle them in an endless uncertainty. It has won the NSW Humanitarian Award for Media, the American Society of Journalists and Authors' 2021 award for Best Longform, is an Honouree in the 2021 Webby Awards' documentary podcast category and a Finalist for Best Current Affairs Podcast and Best Documentary Podcast in the Australian Podcast Awards.

Australia is infamous for its offshore detention regime. Less well known is that, once those remote islands were ‘full’, 30,000 more people remained in Australia – their boats arrived but their lives were stopped by rules that deny them stability. These people live in our cities and towns in an endless limbo.   

Temporary’ gives voice to individuals in the so-called ‘legacy caseload’, who go largely unseen and unheard among us. Their journeys come to life in our online series, vividly illustrated by refugee artists and photographers and contextualised with legal explainers, and their voices rise from an eight-episode podcast series co-produced with the UNSW Centre for Ideas and Guardian Australia. 

If you’ve ever wondered what Australia’s hostility to refugees means in human terms, delve into ‘Temporary’. The series will help you understand how people survive in spite of a system designed to keep them out. 

Explore ‘Temporary’ now.  

Temporary wins Humanitarian Award for Media:

The NSW Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors (STARTTS), in partnership with the Refugee Council of Australia (RCOA), honoured the Kaldor Centre’s storytelling project Temporary in the 13th NSW Humanitarian Awards on Monday 21 June.

Her Excellency the Honourable Margaret Beazley AC QC, Governor of New South Wales, presented the award for media in a private official ceremony at Government House, Sydney.

Temporary wins international recognition:

Temporary also picked up two global honours for 2021, from the American Society of Journalists and Authors (ASJA) and the Webby Awards.

The AJSA recognised the introductory story to Temporary, ‘A Legacy of Endless Limbo’, as winner of the long-form content category of its annual awards. Here’s how the judges described the story:

Lauren Martin’s beautifully woven narrative—one that paints individual portraits of “faceless people”—maintains a delicate balance with her in-depth exploration of the multiple layers of politics behind the immigration crisis, the public fear and ultimately, the endless state of limbo. Martin humanizes the experiences of her subjects, defying readers’ assumptions. The story reached great dimensions and depth in physical effort, that sense of limbo, hope breaking through fear. We’re gripped by Martin’s expertise in allowing us to feel the crisis. From there, we try to grasp the “why.”

The Temporary podcast series was named a Webby Honoree in the Documentary podcast category, where Slate's Slow Burn, Hidden Empire Film Group's Black History in Two Minutes, and BBC Trending are also featured.

Dubbed ‘the Internet's highest honor” by The New York Times, the Webbys are judged by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences. 


The Kaldor Centre plays a vital role in developing legal, sustainable and humane solutions for displaced people around the world.