UNHCR – The UN Refugee agency : The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) was established on December 14, 1950 by the United Nations General Assembly The agency is mandated to lead and co-ordinate international action to protect refugees and resolve their problems worldwide. On the following year on July 28th, the United Nations Convention relating to the Status of Refugees, the legal foundation of helping refugees and the basic statute guiding UNHCR’s work, was adopted.
The primary purpose of UNHCR is to safeguard the rights and well-being of refugees. It strives to ensure that everyone can exercise the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge in another State, with the option to return home voluntarily, integrate locally or to resettle in a third country. The agency also has a mandate to help stateless people.
In an effort to to protect refugees and to promote solutions to their problems, UNHCR seeks to reduce situations of forced displacement by encouraging states and other institutions to create conditions which are conducive to the protection of human rights and the peaceful resolution of disputes. UNHCR works in partnership with governments, regional organizations, international and non-governmental organizations to achieve these objectives.
UNHCR is an impartial organization, offering protection and assistance to refugees and others on the basis of their needs and irrespective of their race, religion, political opinion or gender. In all of its activities, UNHCR pays particular attention to the needs of children and seeks to promote the equal rights of women and girls.
Since 1950, UNHCR has helped tens of millions of people restart their lives. Today, a staff of more than 10,900 people in 130 countries continues to help and protect millions of refugees, returnees, internally displaced and stateless people.