Standing With Refugees: A Global Conversation About A Global Crisis
“Refugees are people like anyone else, like you and me. They led ordinary lives before becoming displaced, and their biggest dream is to be able to live normally again. On World Refugee Day, let us recall our common humanity, celebrate tolerance and diversity and open our hearts to refugees everywhere.” —Ban Ki-moon
What would you do if your home country had become a life threat to you and your family?
Everyday thousands of individuals—infants, elders in wheelchairs, women and men are risking their lives as they flee their home countries. They tend to leave everything behind to embark on journeys in hopes of finding safety. With an increasing number of conflicts and crises causing displacement, a staggering 25.4 million people are refugees (The UN Refugee Agency). To put it in perspective for the current situation, there are more individuals who are displaced than at any other time since World War 2, and the numbers will only continue to rise.
To honor a refugee’s struggle and courage, every year World Refugee Day (June 20) is celebrated to support millions of families all over the world who have lost their homes due to violence of war.
There is a stark difference in reality of the refugee policies on the number of countries that are allowing them into their home countries. Almost 90% of refugees are hosted in developing countries, in which eight countries are hosting half of the refugee population. With the increasing number of refugees, local regions are struggling to provide basic resources (including schools and places to welcome them) to meet the increasing demand.
As the global conversation progresses, we need to start thinking about restructuring our framework and global policies to address and welcome larger groups of refugees. Contrary to perceptions, “Investing one euro in welcoming refugees can yield nearly two euros in economic benefits within five years.” Refugees are an invaluable resource to a host country and can spur the growth through the creation of local businesses.
- Do your research: Educate yourself about the global crisis, find out what issues are prevalent to host countries and find organizations that are helping from the ground up.
- Volunteer your time and skills
- Reach out to your heads of government in pushing them to accept more refugees
- Take action: There are plenty of organizations that are taking the lead in advocating for refugees and they need your support by signing petitions or making donations.
- Spread awareness
Through collective action we can take greater strides in providing dignity for all those who take the journey for a safer life.
Learn more about World Refugee Day
FROM THE EDITOR
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