Each week we collect the most interesting, inspiring and innovative refugee stories from around the world to share with you. Here are this week’s picks:
Every Child Deserves the Right to Play (via BBC Three)
What happens when clowns, musicians, dancers and play therapists show up to a refugee camp? Children play, laugh and most importantly, they heal.
“Beyond politics and beyond all this adult stuff, kids just are kids and they like to play duck duck goose and they like to run about and they like to be congratulated for very average artwork. They need that. Our futures are the dreams we had as kids turned into reality.”
Portraits from the South Sudan Crisis (via USA for UNHCR)
This week, South Sudan recognized a tragic milestone – 1 million refugees have now fled to Uganda.
An average of more than 1,800 South Sudanese refugees a day have fled to Uganda in the past year. The influx has become the fastest growing refugee crisis in the world. Those who make it arrive weak and malnourished from their dangerous journey through the bush. 85 percent of the refugees are women and children.
The Smart Way ‘Sesame Street’ Is Tackling the Refugee Crisis (via Glamour)
Syrian refugee children in Jordan got a special visit from Elmo back in February and now Sesame Street and the International Rescue Committee are working on a version of the show tailored specifically for refugee kids.
“We believe that kids learn best when they see themselves on the screen, when what they see is reflective of their own reality but also aspirational,” says Sherrie Westin, executive vice president for global impact and philanthropy at Sesame Workshop.
Soon Elmo, Big Bird, and the rest of the gang will be talking directly to refugee kids about what matters most to them.
It Began With a Refugee Thanksgiving. Then She Launched a Program to Pair Newly-Arrived Families With American Mentors (via Washington Post)
How do you break down barriers between newly resettled refugees and their new community? If you’re Sloane Davidson, you host refugees for Thanksgiving one year and then the next, you launch Hello Neighbor, a mentorship program that helps local refugees adjust to their new lives in America.
Hello Neighbor taps into “this feeling of neighborhood, of community, and this longing for how we used to support new people who moved into our neighborhood,” said Davidson. “We are social creatures, and we like to share, and we like to be there for each other,” she added.
How Rita Ora Advocates on Behalf of Immigrants and Refugees (via Variety)
Pop star and refugee, Rita Ora, was honored at Variety‘s Power of Young Hollywood event with the inaugural Variety + H&M Conscious Award for her philanthropic work on behalf of refugees.
“I really just wanted to show support for the immigrants and the refugees of our society, just to know that they’re not alone,” Ora said.
Learn more about the event and see a selection of Rita Ora’s speech here.