The World Refugee Day is celebrated every year on the 20th of June to support millions of families all over the world who have lost their homes and dear ones because of violence or war. Many refugees are in exile to escape the effects of natural or human-made disasters. Every minute 20 people leave everything behind to escape war, persecution, or terror. Refugees are among the most vulnerable people in the world.
A refugee is someone who fled his or her home and country owing to “a well-founded fear of persecution because of his/her race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion”, according to the United Nations 1951 Refugee Convention. The rights contained in the 1951 Convention include: The right not to be expelled, except under certain, strictly defined conditions; The right not to be punished for illegal entry into the territory of a contracting State; The right to work; The right to housing; The right to education; The right to public relief and assistance; The right to freedom of religion; The right to access the courts; The right to freedom of movement within the territory; The right to be issued identity and travel documents.
The day was established by the General Assembly of United Nations for the refugees to honor them for their courage of facing lots of problems after losing homes due to conflict or violence and their contributions to their communities. This day celebration provides an opportunity to all to help the refugees worldwide to rebuild their quality lives through lots of related activities.
The theme for this year is "Every Action Counts”. Everyone can make a difference, it is the responsibility of each one of us to make sure that no one is left behind. The focus is to bring about changes to make the world more inclusive. The COVID-19 pandemic and the recent anti-racism protests have shown us how desperately we need to fight for a more inclusive and equal world. It has never been clearer that all of us have a role to play in order to bring about change.
We, at the World Assembly of Youth (WAY), join other organisations on this day in the mission of recognising and appreciating refugees from all around the globe. We would like to remind the world that everyone, including refugees, can contribute to society and every action counts in the effort to create a more just, inclusive, and equal world. We advocate that the public sector and other stakeholders to join us in global effort of protecting the rights of refugees around the world.
Everyone can make a difference, and all of us have a role to play in order to bring about change!