Everybody Counts

The refugee crisis has been in the news a lot over the past year as it undoubtedly deserves to be.

Millions of people forced from their homes and across international borders by the very worst of human and mother nature. It's a crisis on a global scale.

But refugees are actually a minority of the world's displaced people. And it might surprise you to learn that they're not even the largest chunk.

In fact TWO THIRDS of people who have been forced from their homes worldwide are still in their own country - seeking safety but unable to cross a border. These people are largely ignored by the international community and the media. They’re routinely denied the official protection afforded to refugees who are able to cross borders.

It’s estimated that there are more than 40 million people displaced in this way. Think about that number for a second.

If we read all their names aloud, it would take us well over a year.

Or to put it another way - since 2008, one person has been displaced every second of every day by climate and weather disasters.

And 40 million is the conservative estimate, remember?

Christian Aid believes everybody counts. So, what can we do?

The United Nations are currently working on two new agreements on refugees and migration, but, currently, neither will tackle the problem of internal displacement. We believe that the world can and must do better. We believe all people on the move should be protected from harm and have a chance to rebuild their lives, not just survive.

We need to stop drawing meaningless distinctions within this vast population of vulnerable human beings. The UK needs to take a lead in helping the UN draft new agreements that are effective in addressing the problems of displaced people as a whole. Not an arbitrary subset.

40 million people. At the very least. Adrift from their own lives, many haunted by the horrors that have caused them to flee in the first place.

We could continue to pretend they don't exist. We will never have to meet them face to face or look them in the eye after all.

Lalalalalala.

We're not listening. We're not seeing. We don't care.

But what does our faith demand of us? This isn't a theoretical problem. This is happening right here, right now as you read this and in places that could well have been your back garden had it not been for an ancient hand sketching a shaky line across an ancient map.

We could pretend that out of sight really is out of mind.

Or we could do the other thing.

This campaign is just getting started. There's A LOT more to come. And we're not going to shut up about it because it's convenient.

Want to get involved?

 

We've got work to do.