Ask Our Experts! - Part 1July 5, 20182 min read
6 Facts We Learned Working with Migrants and Refugees Around the World: Facts 1 and 2
Working with migrants and refugees is our business at Catholic Relief Services. CRS was founded in 1943 to assist refugees during World War II. Seventy-five years later, we are still coming to the aid of people escaping conflict, violence and natural disasters. While CRS doesn’t resettle refugees in the United States (these programs are run by the Catholic Church’s Migration and Refugee Service and Catholic Charities), our rich history has taught us valuable lessons on how to best help families fleeing crisis.
1. People Do Not Want to Leave Their Homes. An astonishing 1 in 110 people have been forced to flee their home (UNHCR). They only do that when they feel they have no other choice. Most people the world over give the same reason for starting their perilous journey across borders -- violence. That’s true for millions fleeing conflict in South Sudan and for tens of thousands fleeing gang violence in Central America. Most often, people flee to other parts within their country first. Only when they see no other option do people leave their country.
Rick Jones is the agency's Youth and Migration Advisor in Latin America and the Caribbean. He also specializes in issues affecting Central American migration, including gang violence, poverty, and internal displacement. See his contact information at the bottom.
2. Don’t Separate Families. Based on extensive experience with refugees and migrants, CRS agrees with the criticism of the former U.S. policy of separating children from their parents. Decades of research shows that this is so traumatic for children it can lead to long-term psychological, and even physical damage.
Shannon Senefeld is a global development expert at CRS. She has published and presented extensively on international children’s issues and the importance of strengthened family care for children’s development. See her contact information at the bottom.
The experts at Catholic Relief Services are available to help with any media coverage or insight that is required regarding this ongoing news story and issue that is continuing in America.
Simply click on any of their icons to arrange a time for an interview.