Jesuit Refugee Service Latest News and Information Fri, 29 Jul 2016 10:10:24 GMT South Sudan: Violence Fuels Humanitarian Crisis Juba, 28 July, 2016 – South Sudan faces a spiralling humanitarian crisis as the recent surge in fighting prevents aid agencies from providing urgent help to millions of people in need. Violence and insecurity continue in Juba and are spreading to other states despite a fragile ceasefire in a country where half the population relies on humanitarian aid, ten aid agencies warned today. Thu, 28 Jul 2016 05:00:00 GMT A fragile South Sudan threatens the lives, health, homes and education of millions Nairobi, 28 July 2016 – The Jesuit Refugee Service is deeply concerned of the fragile state of affairs in South Sudan after fighting re-erupted and killed nearly 300 civilians in the capital Juba more than two weeks ago. Thu, 28 Jul 2016 05:00:00 GMT Ethiopia: dancers bring rhythm to their lives in exile Mai Aini, 20 July 2016 – Luwam was once at the centre of her nation's spotlight. In Asmara, as a member of the national dance team, she performed for government officials and her fellow citizens at national celebrations, receiving cheers and accolades for her captivating talent. Wed, 20 Jul 2016 05:00:00 GMT Rome: the Jesuit Refugee Service International presents its 2015 Annual Report Rome, 8 July 2016 – In 2015, the Jesuit Refugee Service reaffirmed its commitment to education with the Global Education Initiative and the launch of the Mercy in Motion campaign. Last year, JRS served 724,551 people, 141,333 through education projects. Recognising education is a concrete and durable solution to build more resilient communities, JRS aims to increase this number by 100,000 people by 2020. Fri, 08 Jul 2016 05:00:00 GMT Uganda: a rising rap star advocates for a welcoming world Kampala, 8 July 2016 - As a teenager, Alino dreamed of being a hip hop artist in Congo, where music is the pulse of the country. But like many young people, family demands and expectations that Alino pursue a more stable career put his dreams on hold while he studied petroleum chemistry in a prestigious Congolese university. Never did Alino think that he'd be a rising rap star, and never did he dream it would be while living in exile in Kampala, Uganda. Wed, 06 Jul 2016 05:00:00 GMT World Refugee Day West Africa: learning to move on Yaounde, 29 June 2016 - In 2003, refugees from Central African Republic (CAR) began fleeing to Cameroon to escape violence between armed factions who were looting and burning entire villages, kidnapping and killing thousands of people in the process. Approximately 90,000 people from CAR fled to Cameroon during that time, and were welcomed into approximately 300 villages. Most arrived having lost everything. Wed, 29 Jun 2016 05:00:00 GMT Kenya: Somali refugees struggle in the shadow of forced return, a Refugees Deeply feature Nairobi, 27 June 2016 – Angela Wells, JRS Eastern Africa Communications Officer, writes for Refugees Deeply on the devastating consequences of the Kenyan government's newest restrictions on refugees. Mon, 27 Jun 2016 05:00:00 GMT World Refugee Day Europe: I Get You Brussels, 20 June 2016 - For World Refugee Day, we celebrate two months of our 'I Get You' campaign. In that time, you have told us your stories and shared experiences of local activities run together with refugees. 'I Get You' goes to the very heart of World Refugee Day: it's about people with diverse backgrounds learning and having fun together. Fri, 24 Jun 2016 05:00:00 GMT World Refugee Day Southern Africa: advocating for education Johannesburg, 23 June 2016 -- Conflict, war and persecution drive people away from their homes, all too often, with only the clothes on their backs and whatever other possessions they could grab before fleeing. In recognition of these challenges, the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) Southern Africa ensures that education remains an essential part of rebuilding the lives of displaced people and has witnessed the fact that education irrefutably unlocks potential. Thu, 23 Jun 2016 05:00:00 GMT World Refugee Day Middle East: beating the odds <span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51);">Beirut, 22 June 2016 -- The Syrian conflict is in its sixth year. According to the UN refugee agency (UNHCR), there are today 4.8 million Syrians who are refugees and an additional 6.5 million are displaced within Syria itself. More than half of these (52%) are children. Tasnim, is one of them. This eight-year old child today lives in Lebanon with her family.</span> Wed, 22 Jun 2016 05:00:00 GMT VIDEO: World Refugee Day 2016 -- open minds, unlock potential Rome, 20 June 2016 – As human beings, we are at the mercy of nature, at the mercy of governments, at the mercy of leaders, at the mercy of war. We are at the mercy of forces beyond our control. These forces have caused an unprecedented 60 million people  – mothers, fathers, sisters and children – to flee their homes. Imagine the entire country of Italy in motion: taking trucks, rafts, footpaths and trains; taking children, blankets, clothing and, most often, taking nothing. Mon, 20 Jun 2016 05:00:00 GMT Special JRS Europe publication for World Refugee Day: Journeys of Hope Brussels, 17 June 2016 – Ahead of World Refugee Day, the Jesuit Refugee Service Europe is pleased to present "Journeys of Hope: Stories of refugees on the road to Europe", an eight-part documentary realised with refugees on the move through the Balkans and across the central Mediterranean from January to February 2016. Fri, 17 Jun 2016 05:00:00 GMT Media advisory: World Refugee Day 2016 Rome, 15 June 2016 – This World Refugee Day, the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) calls upon all of us not only to provide refugees with a safe place to stay, but with opportunities to grow and contribute to society. To truly protect means keeping people safe from all evils, including poverty, isolation, exploitation, misconception and neglect. For this reason, this year JRS is using the theme <i>Open minds, unlock potential.</i> Wed, 15 Jun 2016 05:00:00 GMT Europe: over 125 civil society actors call the EU to tackle conflict minerals Rome, 14 June 2015 -- Minerals are key components in many everyday products, from mobile phones, laptops, and jewellery, to cars and light bulbs. Civil society organisations have been documenting the links between minerals and these abuses for years, from their role in funding violent armed groups to the use of child labour in mines. It is time for EU governments to take effective legislative action to ensure companies source minerals responsibly, transparently and sustainably. Tue, 14 Jun 2016 05:00:00 GMT Restrictive EU migration policies force desperate people to take deadly routes Brussels, 8 June 2016 -- While interior ministers meet tomorrow to discuss EU migration policies, people trying to reach the safety of Europe continue to die <i>en route</i>. Caritas Europa and Jesuit Refugee Service Europe calls on European leaders to alter its restrictive approach to migration. Wed, 08 Jun 2016 05:00:00 GMT Lebanon: xenophobia against Syrians in public schools Beirut, 31 May 2016 – Each morning, 150 refugee children file in and out of the Jesuit Refugee Service Frans van der Lugt (JRS FVDL) remedial and early childhood educational centre in the busy Bourj Hammoud neighbourhood of Beirut, with another 150 arriving in the afternoon. The idea is to provide extra support to refugee children registered in Lebanese public schools. But in the public school system, Syrian children still find themselves facing many barriers – first and foremost: xenophobia. Tue, 31 May 2016 05:00:00 GMT Europe: safe and humane channels needed Brussels, 31 May 2016 – According to the UN refugee agency at least 880 forced migrants have perished in a series of shipwrecks on the central Mediterranean over the last week. JRS unequivocally calls upon national and supranational policymakers to use all the means at their disposal to create safe and humane passages for people in need of protection. Tue, 31 May 2016 05:00:00 GMT JRS welcomes Education Cannot Wait fund Rome and Washington DC, 24 May 2016 – The Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) is gratified the international community made a commitment to education Monday at the World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul. The Education Cannot Wait fund follows on the heels of the JRS Global Education Initiative launched last December. Tue, 24 May 2016 05:00:00 GMT Education is a life-saving intervention for refugees Washington, DC, 19 May 2016 -- In the new report <i><a href="" target="_blank">Providing Hope, Investing in the Future: Education in Emergencies & Protracted Crises</a></i>, the Jesuit Refugee Service confirms that education is a life-saving intervention for children and adolescents who are forcibly displaced from their homes. JRS organises educational and recreational activities to heal trauma, promote human dignity, and build skills. Thu, 19 May 2016 05:00:00 GMT NGOs urge government of Kenya to reconsider intended closure of refugee camps Nairobi, 10 May 2016 -- Despite  huge economic and social pressure, Kenya continues to host close to 600,000 refugees and asylum seekers from neighbouring countries. Fifty-six percent of this current refugee population in Kenya comprises women, children and youth who are particularly vulnerable to exploitation and abuse while in displacement. However, JRS and other NGOs worry that the recent position assumed by the government of Kenya, which disbands the Department of Refugee Affairs and indicates that this will be followed by the closure of Dadaab and Kakuma camps, will have unfortunate, far-reaching implications for the thousands of refugees and asylum seekers who have called Kenya a place of refuge. Tue, 10 May 2016 05:00:00 GMT JRS and Rotary discuss how to build stronger communities with refugees Rome, 22 April 2016 – On 29 April, at LUMSA University, Fr Thomas H Smolich SJ, the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) International Director, will speak on a panel discussion hosted by Rotary International to discuss the needs and challenges of refugees as well as sustainable solutions. Fr Smolich will speak alongside Carlotta Sami, Spokeswoman of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees office for Southern Europe, and John Hewko and K.R. Ravindran, General Secretary and President of Rotary International respectively, to discuss the theme “Helping refugees to start over.” Fri, 22 Apr 2016 05:00:00 GMT Global: faith leaders urge Cameron and Obama to help Syrian refugees Rome, 22 April 2016 – President Obama is in the UK for talks with Prime Minister Cameron regarding the upcoming 23 June EU referendum to decide Britain's membership in the EU. They will also discuss the fight to oust the Islamic State. In this letter below, 28 faith based leaders including representatives from the Christian, Hindu, Jewish and Muslim religions call the two leaders to consider Syria in these talks. Fri, 22 Apr 2016 05:00:00 GMT Italy: Pope tells JRS staff to continue walking with refugees Rome, 19 April 2016 – If host countries properly welcome refugees and facilitate their integration into society, forced migration will no longer be an emergency, according to the Jesuit Refugee Service Italy (Centro Astalli) 2015 annual report. Today, to present the Centro Astalli 2015 annual report at Teatro Argentina in Rome, Pope Francis – through a video message – encouraged Centro Astalli to continue its work with refugees, and Romano Prodi, former EU Commission president and Italian Prime Minister, spoke about the economic and political need to welcome refugees. Tue, 19 Apr 2016 05:00:00 GMT Greece: Pope to refugees – “you are not alone” Rome, 17 April 2016 – In his heartfelt visit to the Greek island of Lesbos yesterday, Pope Francis stood in solidarity with refugees and migrants, reminding them “you are not alone.” However, the Pope did not only draw attention to this grave tragedy through words, but through action. On his trip back to the Vatican, he brought with him a dozen Syrian Muslim refugees – including six children – personally showing the EU and the world the values of welcome and accompaniment. Sun, 17 Apr 2016 05:00:00 GMT Greece: Pope to visit Lesbos, a symbol of hope for refugees Rome, 12 April 2016 – At a time when hundreds of thousands are risking their lives trying to reach safety in Europe, the Jesuit Refugee Service is very pleased that Pope Francis will visit the Greek island of Lesbos, a major transit point, this Saturday, 16 April, to confront the emergency situation of refugees and the need for international solidarity among governmental and non-governmental actors head on. Tue, 12 Apr 2016 05:00:00 GMT