Mutaybatu, 55, Rohingya refugee. Mutaybatu is Rohingya — a stateless, persecuted minority that has fled Myanmar. She and her family suffered years of human rights abuses at the hands of Myanmar’s military forces before fleeing to Bangladesh. Their village was attacked, their house was burned and Mutaybatu witnessed her husband’s murder. After a 10-day journey on foot, during which Mutaybatu, her son, daughter-in-law and five grandchildren survived on herbs, weeds and leaves, they crossed the border by boat. Today, the family lives in the UNHCR-supported Kutupalong refugee camp. "My message to the world is I don’t want to be a refugee. I want us to be able to go back to our home…" © UNHCR/Patrick Brown
Vahide, 7, Syrian refugee. Vahide is as old as the conflict that has torn apart the country where she was born. She lives in Turkey with her parents, siblings and cousins, whose father was killed in the war. Vahide attends a local school where she’s learned to speak fluent Turkish. She loves to draw and paint. Like many children, she already has plans for the future. When she grows up, she wants to be a police officer. Turkey hosts more refugees than any other country, and thanks to generous donor support, UNHCR helps the Turkish government provide protection and assistance to refugees in need, including Vahide and her family. © UNHCR/Emrah Gurel
Vahide and her baby sister at their home in Istanbul. © UNHCR/Emrah Gurel
Sarah, 19, South Sudanese refugee. Sarah and her family are among more than one million South Sudanese refugees who have found safety in Uganda. Sarah, a first-time mother, nearly lost her child as a result of fleeing. She recalled, “…it was a challenge to have a balanced diet and my baby was very thin.” Thanks to caring Americans, Sarah, her husband and one-year-old daughter live in the UNHCR-supported Bidibidi refugee settlement. With electronic cash transfers that she receives via her smartphone, she can purchase fresh produce, fish, rice and other healthy foods. As a result, her daughter’s health has improved — and the family can rebuild their life with dignity and hope. © UNHCR/Catherine Robinson
When we tell our stories, we are reminded that people of all cultures and backgrounds share common hopes and dreams. Refugees are no different. And when we believe that everyone's story has value, we can help create a more compassionate world — even in the most horrific circumstances.
Here is a glimpse into the lives of three refugees who have escaped violence and persecution. Thanks to caring, generous Americans, USA for UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, will continue to share their stories — and help provide the protection, shelter, food and other humanitarian assistance they need.
Here's how you can help…
Thank you for reading these powerful stories. Please consider taking the next step by becoming USA for UNHCR’s newest monthly donor. Your strong and steady support will provide the vital humanitarian assistance — and the hope — that refugees like Mutaybatu, Sarah and Vahide need. Make your first monthly gift today.
Jul 12 2018