“Glasgow is a city where dreams are valid,” says Remzije Sherifi.

Our Dear Green Place may not be the city of her birth, but for the winner of the Scottish Women in Business’ Spotlight Award, it’s been the city where Remzije has spent two decades giving back to its people.

Almost 20 years ago to the day, Remzije and her family landed on the turf of Prestwick Airport ­— their only possessions being the clothes on their back.

Earlier that day, along with her husband and their three teenage sons, she’d been one of thousands of families living in squalid conditions under the canvas of refugee camps in Macedonia.

Just weeks before, the family had been forced to flee Kosovo following a grenade attack on their home by Serbian armed forces, in its barbaric attempt to cleanse the country of Kosovan Albanians.

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Driven that first night to their new home on the 21st floor of the old Red Road Flats, Remzije recalls her feeling of relief.

“I was the most happiest person that night for just having that roof over our heads,” she says. “For me it became like a castle that two-bedroom flat.”

Despite leaving her parents and brothers behind, Remzije felt lucky that she and her sons had escaped the war without being separated, knowing that many had not been so fortunate.

Without knowing a word of English and living with the symptoms of breast cancer, Remzije was at the forefront of her little Red Road Kosovan community.

Within a few weeks of her arrival, a meeting room on the 21st floor of the high rise had been set up to give the community a voice.

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Using her skills as a radio producer in Kosovo, Remzije leaned toward her love of the arts to bring people together.

She recalls: “I set up a drama production in the Red Road flats, teaching people to use body language as a way of expression and make a connection with others. I also set up a dancing group for the Kosovan community and a football team with Ross Galbraith from Glasgow the Caring City.”

Remzije adds:“I wanted to do things, not only for my boys, but for the people who’d really experienced much more horror than myself.”

Five years’ of helping fellow Kosovans and an all clear from cancer by her doctor gave Remzije all the experience and energy she needed to make an immediate impact at Maryhill Integration Network when she joined on a part-time basis in 2004.

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Five years of helping fellow Kosovans, and the all clear from cancer by her doctor, gave Remzije all the experience and energy needed to make an immediate impact at Maryhill Integration Network when she joined on a part-time basis in 2004.

15 years on, Remzije is the network’s director, where with committed support staff and local authority and Scottish Government funding, refugees and local migrant communities are given the opportunity to thrive in Glasgow.

Staying true to her arts and culture roots, Remzije has created dance, performance and singing groups at the network’s community hub, along with English classes and housing advice.

One member of the aptly named Joyous Choir is the 13-year-old daughter of Martha Ojeikere. Originally from Nigeria, Martha Ojeikere came to Glasgow at the end of 2018.

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“When I first came here I didn’t know anyone, it was just me and my daughter.,” says Martha. “I knew I was slipping into a depression, but when I came to MIN I met one person, then another and another. I come for the gardening on Tuesdays and to the women’s group on Wednesdays. Now I’m so happy, because I’m busy,”

Speak to anyone who works, volunteers or benefits from the work Remzije has done these past 20 years and none are surprised that on Sunday she scooped that prestigious Spotlight Award... just one of many on the network’s office shelf.