MAKE A DIFFERENCE: WORLD REFUGEE DAY
June 20th is World Refugee Day, a day to recognize refugees for their strength and resilience as they flee violence and conflict in their home countries. The United Nations first established this day back in 2001. According to the UNHCR, there are 65.3 million people that have been forcibly displaced around the world. Most recently, for most us of us, the conflict in Syria come to mind. The images of Aleppo covered in rubble and injured children crying for help, showed the rest of the world what it looks light be caught in the middle of conflict. We all deserve to live safe and healthy lives, and no one on this earth has a choice on where in the world they are born.
Its difficult to imagine having to leave your home and everything you ever knew behind. It's even more difficult being stuck in limbo, unsure of where you are going next, and the next time you'll a warm meal or clean water. The reality is that for refugees they have no other choice. And yet they know that there is still good in the world, and risk their lives to obtain it. We can each do our part to help those that are escaping violence to create a better life for their families.
Here are some ways you can help on World Refugee Day:
1. Sign the #withrefugees petition
The UN has created an online petition for the public to sign. This petition sends a message to governments that we are in solidarity with refugees and that the entire world must do their part in helping people that have been displaced from their homes. When you sign this petition you show the world that you stand in support of helping refugees. Click here to sign the petition.
2. EMPOWER A REFUGEE THROUGH A KIVA LOAN
Kiva is a non-profit that helps provide small loans for people that have been displaced. These loans help a refugee do anything from buying tools for their barbing business to helping a student pay off their tuition for an education that could not otherwise afford. For as little as $25, you can help contribute to a loan to help out a refugee. So skip on eating out for dinner tonight, and instead donate money that can greatly help impact someone's life. Search for current loans that need funding here.
3. CONNECT WITH A REFUGEE FAMILY
World refugee day is celebrated with events all over the world. While the red cross has sponsored a few different events in previous year, a quick google search will bring up local events. From fairs to friendly soccer games, these events will allow you to connect with refugees in your own community. It's a great way to break down those barriers of fear and miss-understanding, and realize that we are more alike then we think.
World Refugee Day is a day to bring us closer together, and to help us realize that even though we may all look different and speak different languages, at the end of the day we are all human beings that deserve safety and freedom.
photo credit: https://www.globalonenessproject.org/