Refugee Week 2022

20-26 June 2022

Published: 31st May 2022

Refugee Week

The last year has seen a huge rise in numbers of people becoming refugees. From those desperate to get out of Taliban-controlled Afghanistan to the recent streams of people fleeing Ukraine, our TV screens have been a regular reminder of what is happening around the world.

As well as the big events leading to large-scale refugee movements there are also the steady trickles of people fleeing overlooked areas of conflict, regions affected by famine and climate change and those people and groups fleeing oppression and persecution. 

Even before events in Ukraine there were estimated to be 84 million forcibly displaced people in the world (UNHCR). With the majority of refugees never getting any further than the neighbouring countries the majority of the world refugee population resides in the developing world, in countries whose populations are already struggling.

According to information on the BBC, ‘if you look at the figures in proportion to a country's overall population, the UK has provided refuge to 121 people per 100,000. On that measure, 20 other European countries have taken in more refugees than the UK.’

During the First World War the UK took in 250,000 Belgian refugees despite being at war itself. Historically Britain has been a refuge to those seeking help and it has helped to set up aid agencies and international codes on assisting and protecting refugees.

If the Ukraine situation has reminded us of anything it is that people do not choose to be refugees and that fleeing one’s home is not undertaken lightly. So, this Refugee Week let's look around at our area and ask if we can do more to help – whoever the refugee is and for whatever reason they had to flee.

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