Tuesday, June 23, 2009

World Refugee Day 20-6-2009

I went to Suffolk House, a heritage building in Penang, recently completed. The guard here is a Burmese refugee. He told me the story of his life in Burma, he is now happily living in Malaysia using refugee status, he show me an identity card issued by UNHCR. He is a Muslim,must be a Rohingyas from east Burma,near Bangladesh border.

After coming from trips from North Thailand and have opportunity meeting the minority people, in my heart I am understanding of the refugee and IDP in Burma. I remember the Shan people(which lead me to understand the North East India, the Nagaland & the Ahome, they are not refugee), Karen, Lahu, Mon ...... some may not have obtain refugee status, and are illegally staying in Thai-Burma border....

Suddenly I remember the World Refugee Day, which I have missed.....

Here is the post from UNHCE, for those who do not understand the work of UNHCR and want to understand their work, please visit their website:-

JUNE 20, 2009: World Refugee Day 2009

"Real People, Real Needs" - refugees are individuals with real needs, just like you and me.

For the 42 million uprooted people around the world, a shortage or lack of the essentials of life - clean water, food, sanitation, shelter, health care and protection from violence and abuse - means that every day can be a struggle just to survive.
Real People, Real Needs

This year, with the world economic crisis threatening to slash aid budgets and amid enormous global uncertainty, we need to ensure refugees are not forgotten. That's why the theme for this year's World Refugee Day on June 20 is "Real People, Real Needs."

Of the millions of people forcibly displaced by conflict, persecution and natural disasters, every one has a story to tell; they are real people, just like you and me, and they have real needs. But, despite the best efforts of UNHCR and many others, many of these basic needs are far from being met.

A comprehensive assessment of the needs of refugees and other people cared for by the UN refugee agency revealed that 30 percent were unmet - a third of them in basic and essential services. Improvements in nutrition and water supplies, access to primary health care, strengthened child protection programmes, better protection for women from sexual violence and abuse, and improvements in living conditions and sanitation facilities are just some of the needs that are not being met worldwide.

This World Refugee Day we ask you to remember the millions of forcibly displaced and stateless people under our care who are struggling with their day-to-day lives. One thing connects them all: basic needs that must be met so they have a chance to rebuild their lives.
(source from http://www.unhcr.org)

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