Friday, February 10, 2012

Days 11 &12: Refugees and Refugee Camps

"A refugee is legally defined as a person who is outside his or her country of nationality and is unable to return due to a well-founded fear of persecution because of his or her race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group. By receiving refugee status, individuals are guaranteed protection of their basic human rights, and cannot be forced to return to a country where they fear persecution."

Today is a combination of two topics: refugees and refugee camps. 

Imagine that you are forced to leave your home, running for your life and for the lives of your family; everything you've ever known, worked for, built, and sown into is left behind. Imagine running from your home, terrified, and not knowing if you'd ever be able to come home again. It's as if your home is being unraveled before your eyes. Then what do you do? You go to a place that you think is supposed to help you. You have no food, no shelter, only what things you carried with you; so you look for a place that can provide these things so you can safely wait. You've left your home for a refugee camp only to find that, not only have you lost everything, but your chance of returning and being able to survive outside of the camp grows slim.  Unraveled homes turn into makeshift tents. Home may be where the heart is but what if you left your heart behind when you fled? Imagine being homesick like that. 

In 2010 there were 15.4 million refugees around the world. To put that in perspective; in this picture there are 10,004 black dots. You would need 100 copies of this picture to get close to 1 million black dots, 1000 copies to get 10 million black dots...get it?

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