LET'S HELP REFUGEES THRIVE, NOT JUST SURVIVE
Not investing in refugees is a huge missed opportunity. Leave them abandoned, and they risk exploitation and abuse, and leave them unskilled and uneducated,and delay by years the return to peace and prosperity in their countries. I believe how we treat the uprooted will shape the future of our world. The victims of war can hold the keys to lasting peace, and it's the refugees who can stop the cycle of violence.
Leave refugees to languish and they will become a members of a lost generation.
"... Refugees have a lot of time to prepare for their return. You might imagine that being a refugee is just a temporary state. Well far from it. With wars going on and on, the average time a refugee will spend in exile is 17 years.."
"... all refugee children tell us education is the most important thing in their lives. Why? Because it allows them to think of their future rather than the nightmare of their past. It allows them to think of hope rather than hatred."
There is something more that we can do than just simply helping refugees survive. We can help them thrive. We should think of refugee camps and communities as more than just temporary population centers where people languish waiting for the war to end. Rather, as centers of excellence, where refugees can triumph over their trauma and train for the day that they can go home as agents of positive change and social transformation. It makes so much sense.
A LOST GENERATION, ISOLATED AND FRUSTRATED
"... I'm reminded of a recent visit I took to a Syrian refugee camp in northern Iraq, and I met this girl, and I thought, "She's beautiful," and I went up to her and asked her, "Can I take your picture?" And she said yes, but she refused to smile. I think she couldn't, because I think she must realize that she represents a lost generation of Syrian refugee children, a generation isolated and frustrated. And yet, look at what they fled: utter destruction, buildings, industries, schools, roads, homes."