We Won't Lose Count, a new collaboration between the IRC and Trinidadian-American activist and musician TRISHES, highlights three stories of musician refugees from around the world, uniting their voices under global pop and hip hop fusion. The song speaks to the resilience and strength of refugees, while also raising awareness for the millions of people who have been forced to flee their homes due to conflict and persecution. 

Listen to We Won’t Lose Count on Spotify and iTunes

Solomiia Deriabina, a 16-year-old violinist from Ukraine now residing in Poland, joins forces with Farhad Yaqoobi, a tabla player from Afghanistan currently based in San Diego, and gospel singer-songwriter David Divin, originating from the Democratic Republic of Congo and now situated in Charlottesville. These talented musicians have received support from IRC programs across Europe and the United States, aiding them in rebuilding their lives in their new environments.

We Won't Lose Count is a testament to the resilience and strength of displaced individuals and underscores the importance of compassion and solidarity.

“This year, with over 120 million people displaced globally, it can feel impossible to wrap your head around the fact that every single one of those people is as real and full fleshed as you are, with talents, families, a sense of humor, a favorite song, a favorite dish they like to eat…” says singer and multidisciplinary artist, TRISHES. “The song was part of an effort to understand, even if it’s just three stories, about these people more closely.”

She continues: “Getting to create a song with refugee musicians from all over the globe, people who have had to fight circumstance after circumstance just to be able to keep playing music, has been one of the most fulfilling creative experiences of my life.

“It’s a reminder that we live in a world where something as simple and beautiful as playing music is a privilege, and it’s a reminder of all of the art and ideas we miss out on when we don’t assure everyone has access to basic resources, stability and housing.”

Get to know the musicians behind We Won’t Lose Count


Multifaceted artist TRISHES pushes the boundaries of art and self-concepts through live looping, visual art, and spoken word, delving deep into our psyches. Her undeniably original songwriting, fleshed out by hip-hop beats and pop hooks, examines human struggle through an anthropological lens to prompt listeners on a journey of self-inquiry. Her debut album The Id came out in October 2021. TRISHES is currently working on her Sophomore album Superego.

Headshot of TRISHES
Multifaceted artist TRISHES pushes the boundaries of art and self-concepts through live looping, visual art, and spoken word.
Photo: Corbin Cox

TRISHES is renowned for her creativity and fervor at the crossroads of arts and activism, earning her speaking engagements worldwide. She has graced prestigious platforms such as TEDxDelthorneWomen in Los Angeles, The Independent’s 50th Anniversary in New York, and XP Music Futures in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

“The fact that people from opposite ends of the globe, who may not even speak the same language, can sit down and play music together, shows how powerful music can be as a force for change,” TRISHES says. “On We Won’t Lose Count, you’re hearing this; the journeys of my fellow musicians through hardship, showing up with generosity and joy to celebrate the resilience and courage of people forced to flee their homes. By telling their stories, we hope to bring an understanding and empathy for the refugee experience.”

TRISHES initially engaged in supporting refugees upon hearing about those fleeing Syria, feeling a strong urge to assist in any way possible. She swiftly connected with a local organization aiding in the resettlement of refugees arriving in Los Angeles.

From doing that work, TRISHES was eventually introduced to the IRC and got to perform at the annual Global Rescue Dinner event. “That’s when I really fell in love with the people there,” she recalls. “The world can feel so dark sometimes and the people who work for the IRC give me a lot of hope.”

Solomiia Deriabina from Ukraine, based in Warsaw, Poland

Solomiia, a 16-year-old from Ukraine, has immersed herself in music since childhood. Proficient in saxophone, piano, and her beloved violin, she faced turmoil when violence erupted in her city during her freshman year. Fleeing to Poland with her family, she left her music school behind. However, upon reaching Poland, a nurturing community embraced her and assisted in her enrollment at a new music school.

Solomiia plays violin during her recording session at MaQ Records Studio in Poland.
Solomiia plays violin during her recording session at MaQ Records Studio in Poland.
Photo: Valeriia Dotsenko

Now, she continues pursuing her passion for music and performs in concerts and contests. Solomiia's grandmother was supported by the IRC cash assistance program to help as the family rebuilds their lives in their new community.

David Divin from the DRC, based in Charlottesville, VA 

Originally from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), singer and pianist David began his musical journey singing in the church choir in his hometown. After his family had to flee the DRC, David learned to play and write music in the refugee camps of Tanzania. His debut album, "Utakaso” (Sanctification), is available on all digital platforms. David says he wants his music to spread peace and believes in making the word of God accessible through his musical gift and singing.

Farhad Yaqoobi from Afghanistan, based in San Diego, CA 

Farhad is a former wedding musician who was forced to flee Afghanistan in the mid-2010s after he received death threats for performing his music. When he and his brother resettled in San Diego, the IRC helped them with car loans and finding job placements.

In the U.S., Farhad continues to make music, featuring his own singing and working as a producer for other singers. Listen here.

Farhad poses for a photo with TRISHES and producer Gabriel Bells.
Farhad poses for a photo with TRISHES and producer Gabriel Bells.

The process of creating We Won’t Lose Count

In discussing the creation of "We Won’t Lose Count," TRISHES shares, “My producer and I started working on a skeleton of the song and wrote violin, tabla and piano parts specifically for Farhad, Solomiia and David, with the direction to alter and make the arrangement their own as much as they wanted to.”

Following this initial phase, the team met with the musicians over Zoom to delve into their personal stories. “From those calls, we began shaping the song’s lyrics,” TRISHES explains. With a deeper understanding of the musicians' lives and the composition taking form, TRISHES and producer Gabriel Bells traveled to San Diego to record Farhad playing the tabla in person at Emerald Age Recording Studios. They then collaborated with the Music Resource Center in Charlottesville to record David on the piano remotely, and Solomiia’s violin part was captured at MaQ Records Studio in Poland.

A snapshot of the recording studio in Poland, where Solomiia's part was recorded.
A snapshot of the recording process where Solomiia’s violin part was captured at MaQ Records Studio in Poland.
Photo: Valeriia Dotsenko

Follow the IRC and TRISHES for more behind-the-scenes content about the making of the original song.

How does the IRC support refugees globally?

The IRC is on the ground in 49 countries around the world, including the Democratic Republic of Congo, the occupied Palestinian territory, Sudan and Ukraine, working to support refugees and other crisis-affected families. This includes helping to restore health, safety, education, economic wellbeing and power to people devastated by conflict and disaster.

The IRC also works across 29 U.S. cities to support newly arrived refugees with immediate aid, including food, housing and medical attention. Our resettlement services help people to find jobs, learn English and become familiar with American culture. We also work to reunite refugee families separated by conflict and assist resettled refugees to become citizens.

Learn more about our work and how you can help refugees this World Refugee Day.

Listen to We Won’t Lose Count on Spotify and iTunes.