Live Blog 2021: This World Refugee Day, we are stronger together
UNHCR Live Blog for World Refugee Day 2021: Join us as we celebrate WRD in Africa
On World Refugee Day, UNHCR honours the courage of those who have been forced to flee war and persecution as well as the people around the world who have welcomed refugees into their communities
© UNHCR/Antoine Tardy
Welcome to the World Refugee Day 2021 Africa Live Blog! This year, we are highlighting events and stories from around Africa that showcase refugees as well as the countries, organizations and communities that support and welcome them.
Each World Refugee Day, 20 June, UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, joins with others around the world to honour the more than 80 million people who have been forced to flee war, conflicts and persecution and rebuild their lives far from home. We also celebrate the people who have opened their countries, communities and even their homes to those who seek safety and peace.
The COVID-19 pandemic has strained our healthcare systems, forced children out of school and sometimes kept us from those we love. Refugees have stepped up despite the challenges they face – working on the front lines as nurses and doctors, inventing ways to keep people from spreading germs in close quarters, distributing information on how to stay healthy and safe and more.
Given the chance, refugees will continue to contribute to a stronger, safer and more vibrant world. Together #withrefugees we can achieve anything.
In case you missed it:
What does home mean to you? Show us during our TikTokForGood challenge!
This #WorldRefugeeDay, @MaryMaker10 is sharing what #HomeMeans to her and wants you to do the same.— UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency (@Refugees) June 16, 2021
Join our @TikTokForGood challenge and tell us without telling us what home means to you. https://t.co/XLpWjaDXdO pic.twitter.com/qPkExNVTpT
The World Refugee Day emoji:
This year, UNHCR and Twitter partnered with Afghan-Canadian artist, Hangama Amiri, to create the 2021 World Refugee Day emoji. You can read a Q/A with the artist here.
We are pleased to continue our partnership with UNHCR @Refugees to launch a special emoji ahead of #WorldRefugeeDay on June 20th.— Twitter Public Policy (@Policy) June 14, 2021
This year, for the first time, the emoji has been created by a refugee artist, Hangama Amiri @hangama_art.
Show your support and stand #WithRefugees pic.twitter.com/9FkOeZZe5H
Message from the Bureau Director, East, Horn & Great Lakes Region
Watch this apt message from Clementine Nkweta Salami, UNHCR Bureau Director for East, Horn & Great Lakes region, Africa.
Education can be life-changing.— UNHCR East, Horn of Africa and Great Lakes (@RefugeesAfrica) June 20, 2021
For #refugee girls, it’s a chance to get new skills, achieve dreams and take on opportunities to impact society.
This #WorldRefugeeDay , join us in calling for more support to help them access & complete secondary education.
Together we learn. pic.twitter.com/RHlEnH9x5n
Upper Nile State, South Sudan
Dedicated surgeon and Nansen Award winner Dr. Evan Atar, marked the day with the opening of a new maternity ward, constructed with proceeds from his 2018 Award.
🎖Nansen award winner— UNHCR South Sudan (@UNHCRSouthSudan) June 20, 2021
👨🏾⚕️Dedicated surgeon from #SouthSudan
👶🏾 Dr. Evan Atar continues be a champion, w/ the construction of a new maternity ward for @Refugees & host communities in Upper Nile State making the best use of the 2018 #Nansen prize.
🙏 for standing #WithRefugees pic.twitter.com/roUTCjwZ6Y
Maban County, South Sudan
And in Maban County, there was music and dance to mark the day.
On World Refugee Day, in #SouthSudan we celebrate the fact that with help from welcoming communities, kind neighbours & international support, @refugees can find the strength to heal, learn & even shine ⭐️— UNHCR South Sudan (@UNHCRSouthSudan) June 20, 2021
Music & dance mark the occasion in Maban refugee camps 🎶 #WithRefugees pic.twitter.com/8MJ50PofqF
Pretoria, South Africa
The Director of our Southern Africa Bureau joined refugees and other congregants to mark the day with a mass at the Cathedral of Christ the King, including refugees who sang in the choir.
Today @UNHCRSouthernAf commemorated #RefugeeDay with the His Grace, the Archbishop Buti Thagale, UNHCR’s @valentintaspoba, refugees, guests and staff. Through integration and inclusion together we can achieve anything. #WithRefugees. pic.twitter.com/djFmB8X0Qk— UNHCR Southern Africa (@UNHCRSouthernAF) June 20, 2021
Bidibidi refugee settlement, Uganda
Refugees in Bidibidi settlement painted this beautiful mural to commemorate World Refugee Day in Uganda.
Refugee artists from South Sudan painted this beautiful mural in Bidibidi settlement, northern Uganda to commemorate #WorldRefugeeDay with support from @ArtolutionOrg @Refugees @RefugeesAfrica pic.twitter.com/v3dBknWZlu— UNHCR Uganda (@UNHCRuganda) June 20, 2021
Brought together in the name of sports, refugee women footballers from Nduta and Nyarugusu camps beat the host community team in Kigoma. Together we shine!
Combined women #Refugees team from Nduta and Nyarugusu camp beat the Kigoma host community women's team in the #WorldRefugeeDay football tournament in Tanzania. United in sports - Together we can achieve anything, together we thrive! pic.twitter.com/dxobQLASsv— UNHCR Tanzania (@UNHCRTanzania) June 20, 2021
Goma, the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Poetry slam! Congolese slammer Feza Ketya expressed her feelings alongside other young Burundian and Rwandan refugees in Goma.
”This text has no beginning or end. I wrote it at random a bit like the mess in my head.”
Kinshasa, the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Our colleagues linked up with refugees in the DRC for a World Refugee Day dance challenge. Check out their moves!
💃🕺 Want to show us your dance moves?— Le HCR en RDC (@UNHCR_DRC) June 20, 2021
🇨🇩🌍 Join us this #WorldRefugeeDay and dance together in solidarity with refugees in the DR Congo !
Watch the full 🎥 here: https://t.co/YFI5HEjgyK pic.twitter.com/naei1OZ1HT
UNHCR staff and local Congolese also joined refugee artists to paint a large mural at our office in Kinshasa as part of the commemoration of World Refugee Day in the capital. The mural depicted the message: "Everyone has the right to a nationality."
Meanwhile, a virtual photo exhibition titled "Together we can achieve anything,"/ "Ensemble On Peut Tout Réussir" was held to celebrate people who have embraced refugees by opening their borders, communities and their homes. This year, we are calling for greater inclusion of refugees in health systems, schools and sports.
The motto of this year’s World Refugee Day is “Together we heal, learn and shine.” In Nigeria’s Adagom 1 Settlement, young Bridget from Cameroon showed Nigerian actress and High-Profile Supporter Judith Audu how to learn together by inviting her to spend the day at her primary school.
▶️For #RefugeeDay , @judithaudu, @Refugees High Profile Supporter spent a day in the life of Bridget, a young Cameroonian refugee in Nigeria🇳🇬— UNHCR West & Central Africa (@UNHCRWestAfrica) June 19, 2021
Together we learn !#WithRefugees @unhcrnigeria @BerquinC @RefugeesCmr @FatiKaba pic.twitter.com/BFeJLA2d6r
Victor spent most of his life in war zones. For World Refugee Day, he sat down with Refugees Chief Filippo Grandi for an intimate conversation on trauma passed down through generations, the need for peace and what it means when you don’t know if you can be resilient anymore.
"I transformed my trauma, my pain and my suffering into an opportunity for leadership."@Victor_OCHEN sits down to share his thoughts with our chief @FilippoGrandi.#WorldRefugeeDay pic.twitter.com/n9TuJ30jea— UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency (@Refugees) June 19, 2021
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Celebrations have begun in Addis Ababa, where UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador Betty G and young refugees gathered to discuss. – and sing about– the life changing power of education.
Thank you @ItsBettyG - UNHCRs Goodwill Ambassador - for her strong dedication & support for #refugees ... and for her beautiful song today at our #WorldRefugeeDay event in Addis Ababa, co-hosted with @EthRefugee @JesuitRefugee #WISE @tellingthereal #WithRefugees pic.twitter.com/Ok9TA5fTcT— UNHCR Ethiopia (@UNHCREthiopia) June 18, 2021
Working with Vodafone Foundation and refugee communities, UNHCR turns classrooms into multimedia hubs. See how it works!
As connectivity transforms the world, those with most to gain are often last to benefit.— Vodafone Foundation (@VodafoneFdn) June 17, 2021
Find out how #InstantNetworkSchools with @UNHCRMozambique will connect 9,000 @refugees, asylum seekers and students to quality digital education.🇲🇿https://t.co/MH28hADkCM#WorldRefugeeDay pic.twitter.com/0VBxUBVcEY
This World Refugee Day, UNHCR’s theme is “together we heal, learn and shine,” and we call for the inclusion of refugees in healthcare, education and sport. These kids drew what this means to them!
As part of events marking #WorldRefugeeDay in #Cameroon 🇨🇲, #refugee & 🇨🇲 kids in 6 primary #schools in the outskirts of #Yaounde were asked to #draw what "together we heal, learn & shine" meant to them.— UNHCR Cameroon (@RefugeesCmr) June 16, 2021
This was the #winner - showing their flight but also hope, after safety! pic.twitter.com/UxwlnskGim