TORONTO – The latest displaced population figures released today by the UN Agency for Refugees (UNHCR) highlight an unprecedented crisis that shows no signs of abatement.
The new numbers show more than 5 million people were displaced from their homes last year, bringing the total displaced population to 65.3 million people. That number is more than the population of the United Kingdom and almost double that of Canada.
In a statement released today, the UNHCR notes that half of displaced people are children and “86% of refugees under the UNHCR’s mandate in 2015 were in low and middle income countries close to situations of conflict.”
Today marks World Refugee Day, and Canadian humanitarian aid organizations are holding a global day of action where Canadians can join to raise awareness and donate to help provide food, shelter, medical care, personal safety and safe drinking water to those in need.
“Last year, 24 people were displaced from their homes every minute, the majority of them from the Global South. This global refugee crisis represents one of the most urgent crises of our time,” says Nicolas Moyer, Executive Director of the Humanitarian Coalition. “The statistics surrounding this crisis are staggering, but we can’t forget that each number represents an individual, with a dream and a personal story that must be shared. Working with other humanitarian agencies, that’s what this World Refugee Day campaign is about.”
Donations can be made to the World Refugee Day campaign at www.worldrefugeeday.com or by calling 1-800-464-9154.
This World Refugee Day campaign brings together Humanitarian Coalition members CARE Canada, Oxfam Canada, Oxfam-Québec, Plan International Canada, Save the Children as well as Canadian Foodgrains Bank, Islamic Relief Canada, World Vision Canada, Canadian Lutheran World Relief, L’Oeuvre Leger, Médécins du Monde, Handicap International and World University Service of Canada.
For more information visit www.worldrefugeeday.com or contact
Yosé Cormier Humanitarian Coalition 613-292-2687 firstname.lastname@example.org