Refugee Week was first held in 1998 and developed in response to the increasingly negative perceptions of refugees and asylum seekers in Britain. It is the only UK-wide event that attempts to counter this negative climate, defending the importance of sanctuary and the benefits it can bring to both refugees and host communities.
This year, Refugee Week is dedicated to refugee children and young people. The theme, 'Our shared future', aims 'to put a spotlight on the refugee children and young people who exhibit such adaptability, resilience and determination in rebuilding their lives in the UK, and who play (and will go on to play) an important role in shaping our future society.'
Throughout the week there are events and activities happening in Oxford and around the UK. Oxford Refugee Week seeks to engage people from all areas of the local community in a dialogue about refugees and asylum seekers and the obstacles they face within the UK system. A number of events are planned, including an authors talk at Blackwell's Bookshop on Wednesday, with several researchers from the RSC.
Friday 20 June is World Refugee Day, and we'll be launched a new report by the Humanitarian Innovation Project entitled, Refugee Economies: Rethinking Popular Assumptions. If you haven'y already done so, sign up to our Thunderclap campaign and show your support by donating a tweet, Facebook or Tumblr post. A launch event will be held from 1-2pm at the Oxford Department of International Development – all welcome!