Salomon Lukonga is a former refugee who lives at Redbank. He is launching a fashion line to use the profits to provide basic care to people living in a large refugee camp in Africa.
Salomon Lukonga is a former refugee who lives at Redbank. He is launching a fashion line to use the profits to provide basic care to people living in a large refugee camp in Africa. Cordell Richardson

'Born in a refugee camp': Qld man launches fashion line

MEET Salomon Lukonga, former refugee, fashion model and now designer.

Once upon a time Salomon was just a child, living in the world's biggest refugee camp where he was born.

That changed in 2011 when his family was offered residency in Australia.

Today, the young Redbank resident is a budding fashion designer with a mission to help save the lives of more than half a million Congolese refugees, still trapped in the African camp.

Tonight, Salomon will host his first ever fashion show, launching the line Mojalivin - the birth of more love.

"I am really excited. Nervous, but I feel really prepared," Salomon said.

"Soon people will start buying clothes and that means I can start donating 30% of the profits.

"I will finally be giving back to the less fortunate."

Salomon Lukonga is a former refugee who lives at Redbank. He is launching a fashion line to use the profits to provide basic care to people living in a large refugee camp in Africa.
Salomon Lukonga is a former refugee who lives at Redbank. He is launching a fashion line to use the profits to provide basic care to people living in a large refugee camp in Africa. Cordell Richardson


Salomon's family fled the brutal violence of the Democratic Republic of Congo in central Africa.

Life in the refugee camp where would be unimaginable to most.

The camp was horribly overcrowded.

At times Salomon thought he and his siblings would die there because becoming sick could mean quick death due to limited access to medical care and basic medication.

Salomon's mission to earn enough money to send back essential medical supplies to the camp began in 2016, when he was just 17 and still in high school.

He used his modelling career and love of fashion as inspiration, along with some defining words from one of his hero - Deng Thiak Adut, a refugee and former child soldier.

Salomon Lukonga is a former refugee who lives at Redbank. He is launching a fashion line to use the profits to provide basic care to people living in a large refugee camp in Africa.
Salomon Lukonga is a former refugee who lives at Redbank. He is launching a fashion line to use the profits to provide basic care to people living in a large refugee camp in Africa. Cordell Richardson

Mr Adut is now a lawyer living in Sydney dedicated to helping refugees.

"He is my inspiration," Salomon said.

"His story is just amazing, being a child soldier and a refugee as well. It made me think there is more to me. That if he can do it, I can do it.

"My goal is also to inspire other refugees. There is so much to life and people on the other side are struggling.

"We should all spend time creating opportunities for the less fortunate."

Want to catch the show? Tickets are still available or $30 or $50.

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