Sunday, September 23, 2018
   
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World Refugee Day (UN): Stand With Refugees

June 20 is a day when the whole world commemorates the resilience and strength of refugees. Currently, there are more than 65.5 million forcibly displaced people around the world. 

Civil unrest, environmental destruction, human rights violations and persecution are pushing people to flee their homes and rely upon strangers to survive their perilous journey to safety. 
 
In the face of this unprecedented human crisis, governments in the West are closing their borders and leaving people stranded in limbo waiting admission.  
 
This June 20, the United Nation High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) is asking us all to urge governments to keep their international and human obligations. By signing the #WithRefugees petition at the UNHCR website, you will join a worldwide effort towards: 
  • Providing every refugee child with an education
  • Giving each refugee family somewhere safe to live
  • Allowing every refugee to work or learn new skills to support their families
In addition, we can welcome the newcomers who have already arrived in Canada. Options include:  
 
Language Assistance
Refugees in Canada often need to learn English. Consider offering your aid to conversation circles. CultureLink is seeking facilitators and you can learn more here.
 
In-Kind Donations
If you have clothes you don't wear, contact New Circles to donate them. Furniture and other household items can also be dropped off at Furniture Bank which has arrangements to distribute housewares to refugees in Toronto. 
 
Volunteering
You could offer your time to refugee organizations such as Lifeline Syria which matches refugee applications to sponsors or the FCJ Refugee Centre which helps refugees through workshops, assisted job searches, health care services and other support programs. You can find a full list of organizations in need of volunteers by clicking here

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