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World Refugee Day 2004 National Activity Plan: France

World Refugee Day 2004 National Activity Plan: France

20 June 2004


On 4 June, UNHCR will participate in the United Nations Day organised by the Political Study Institute (Sciences-Po). The agency will also set up a photo exhibition on children by Sebastião Salgado.

In Lyon, the UNHCR Representative will participate in an 18 June seminar on the theme, "Asylum at crossroads", organised by the agency's operational partner, Forum Réfugiés. Lyon will also host a walk of solidarity on 20 June with refugees under white umbrellas, which symbolise shelter, with the tagline, "Let's protect refugees".

An awareness campaign targeting schools has been launched, and interested schools have each received a set of posters (especially those dedicated to refugee children and women), as well as educational kits.

UNHCR has initiated through the 22 "Conseils Régionaux" (local authorities) a programme targeting local community associations by widely disseminating information on the celebration of World Refugee Day.

For this year's World Refugee Day, the French Association for UNHCR will publish on 17-18 June a special edition of its quarterly newsletter, Action Réfugiés. This issue will be distributed during the different World Refugee Day celebrations. Based on the theme, "A place to call home: Rebuilding lives in safety and dignity", this special issue will focus on the search for, and implementation of, durable solutions for refugees.

The Association will also produce a special e-newsletter focusing on the theme. This online issue will also review some events and celebrations planned all over the world to mark this day.

The Association's website will feature a special corner on World Refugee Day 2004. For more information, please visit:

During the week of 16-23 June, 800 posters will be displayed through the whole Parisian subway network. These posters are based on two of the World Refugee Day 2004 posters campaign, "Coming Back" and "New Land, New Life". The campaign aims to raise public awareness on the problems and needs of refugees and other people of concern to UNHCR. It offers information on the search for, and implementation of, durable solutions for refugees.

A conference-debate will be organised by the company, Schneider Electric. Led by well-known French journalist Guillaume Durand, participants will include Henri Lachmann, Chairman and CEO of Schneider Electric; Michel Breton, CEO of France Telecom; and Henri Proglio, Chairman of Veolia Environnement.

All Schneider Electric employees will be called upon to get involved in World Refugee Day activities. They will get information on refugee issues, while a company-wide donation campaign will also encourage employees to contribute money for UNHCR.

During the conference, all three companies, Schneider Electric SA, Veolia Environnement and France Telecom, will make a special donation to fund an education programme in Cameroon. UNHCR's Goodwill Ambassador, Julien Clerc, will receive the contribution on behalf of UNHCR. Schneider Electric already made an in-kind donation for a water programme in Ethiopia.