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Refugee Week spreads the word

19 June 2011

Woman smiling in front of photos© InfoTo mark Refugee Week (20-26 June), the Red Cross is asking people to look beyond the stereotypical ‘refugee’ label and highlighting the positive contribution many refugees make in the UK.

Many refugees and asylum seekers face severe difficulties once they arrive in the UK. Unable to work or support themselves, many struggle for basics such as food and shelter. Some of the key issues they encounter are the possibility of detention, living in destitution and contending with negative stereotypes.

This year’s campaign includes an online video – which shows how refugees can overcome the challenges of fleeing persecution to build new, productive lives – and numerous events across the UK, including a comedy benefit night in Glasgow.

'Enormous contribution'

And if you want to brush up on your knowledge, check out our refugees: fact from fiction feature, which shines a myth-busting spotlight on some of the key facts behind refugee scare stories.

Nick Scott-Flynn, head of refugee services, said: “Refugees are ordinary people to whom extraordinary and often very horrible things have happened, forcing them to flee their country. Many make an enormous contribution to the life of the UK and Refugee Week is an opportunity to celebrate that.”

How our refugee services help people

Becaome a refugee services volunteer


Refugee true stories

When Ibrahim was reunited with his wife and sons, they became the 1000th family to be reunited by the British Red Cross.

Tamba saw his colleagues executed on live TV because they had criticised the Nigerian government.