Why Refugees and Time are Urgent Matters
One of the hardest parts of being a refugee, is that time takes on a different kind of energy. There is a threat to life, whether it be from natural disaster or man-made conflict, that instigates a survival-flight for life response. People literally have to abandon their homes, life as they know it, and run for safety. When they do reach a place of safety, the waiting begins. If you ever struggle with waiting and patience, this is the most excruciating it can be – lives are in the balance. It’s helpful to understand this because it plays a major role in how we work to alleviate the suffering of refugees.
In some areas of the world now, people fleeing will simply stop where they can, only to have to flee again if danger follows and erupts. This has become a cycle in countries within Africa, like Uganda, The Congo, and Sudan. For others, the process begins of getting their names on a list with humanitarian world organizations who work to place them in a new home, which means an entirely different country and land. From there, it can be years before a refugee is placed and in many cases, refugees are never placed. The most current example of this is the Syrian refugees. Those who fled to the closest bordering countries are not able to have even their most basic needs met because these countries are not economically able to handle so many people in addition to their own populations’ needs. So for a time they have refuge, yet for hundreds of thousands, it is only a waiting place. As many as possible see if they can be sent to other countries, such as Britain and the United States, or parts of Europe. In this process, a refugee is never sure of where they may end up. Can you imagine how that would feel? How stressful it would be to live like that?
This is why at Global Refuge, time is an urgent matter to us. We work to respond quickly and with urgency to understand the needs of refugees and then meet those needs, facilitating healing and hope for them. Both scenarios are where we serve because they are the times and places where refugees are exposed to life-threatening diseases, malnutrition and even starvation. While clean water, shelter and food are some of the aid that we provide, we primarily focus on medical aid. The most effective, sustainable way we have found for doing this is to establish medical clinics from which aid and treatment can be administered and local medics can also be trained for helping their own people.
If this stirs your heart and you’re looking for a way to lessen the suffering in our world, please consider what you can commit to financially contribute to Global Refuge. This can be a one-time or on-going contribution. Another way you can be a part of the difference we’re making is to share about us with others. That is easier than ever today with social media, email, and the tried-and-true phone call. Want to get more “hands-on” involved? We have opportunities to volunteer at our Global Goods and Coffee Shop, our Global Thrift Store, and periodically by traveling with us to our projects to serve refugees on site. Thank you for all you help us do. It’s only possible with you.