In honour of World Refugee Day, all new donations that we receive over the next week (from now until the end of June 26) will be reserved specifically for supporting the Hagiga Wahid project in Uganda. Click here to donate.

As we join people around the world in marking World Refugee Day today, I want to share with you why it’s so important for the Sentinel Project team to work with people who have been forced from their homes. Counting both refugees and internally displaced people, there are now about 80,000,000 individuals worldwide who have fled conflict and persecution, which is over 1% of the world’s population. As our team works to assist communities threatened by genocide and other mass atrocities, it’s critical for our programs to include displaced people who are doing their best to survive and rebuild their lives in peace.

Many of the world’s displaced people have experienced exactly the kind of violence that the Sentinel Project aims to prevent and mitigate. At the same time, major population shifts can destabilize new areas and increase the risk of future violence, which is why peacebuilding efforts between refugees, IDPs, and host communities are critical. This situation has led us to set up initiatives like Hagiga Wahid in Uganda and South Sudan as well as to expand the Una Hakika project in Kenya to include Kakuma Refugee Camp.

Our team works directly with refugees and refugee-led organizations in doing this work because they best understand the needs and challenges at hand. Above all else, their efforts remind us why World Refugee Day isn’t just about acknowledging an urgent global crisis but also about maintaining hope and celebrating successes as many refugees overcome serious obstacles to rebuild their lives and help others to do the same.

I invite you to read some of our blog posts on this subject, which we’ve shared below, as well as to follow us on Facebook and Twitter as we share posts over the coming week about our team’s work with refugees.

“Rohingya refugees in Cox’s Bazar brace for the COVID-19 pandemic” – As the pandemic continues to impact many countries worldwide, questions have been raised about the readiness of Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh for the onset of COVID-19. Read more about the situation from our Myanmar analyst.

“Reports from Rhino Camp: Surveying Refugees and Rumours” – The Hagiga Wahid initiative is still progressing well thanks to the help of our partners at the Community Development Centre. Recent events confirm the findings of our initial research and show the continued importance of improving access to reliable information in order to build peace among South Sudanese refugees and host communities in Uganda. Read more about this critical work.