News on refugees seems to be appearing every week these days. And when war and political upheaval is happening thousands of miles from home, it can be difficult to determine how best to help the survivors. As refugees arrive in your home country looking to escape the crisis at home and in search of a better life, there are plenty of things that you can do to help.
One of the simplest yet effective things that you can do to support refugees is to offer financial and practical support to refugee organizations. These organizations are often the first point of call for many refugees who arrive in the country and they help with everything from getting somewhere to live to food, clothing, and education. Setting up a regular donation amount to a refugee charity will go a long way. Choose a reputable organization to ensure that your money is stretching as far as possible to do good.
Become a Host:
If you have a spare bedroom, it’s worth considering hosting a refugee from your community. There are various organizations that you can work with that provide temporary housing for refugees and ensure that they have a safe space to stay until they can find a permanent home. You will be interviewed beforehand to ensure that you are a good fit, and you will be able to set limits on the number of people that you are willing to take in and how long for.
Many refugees do not speak English as a first language and often find themselves trying to navigate a new and unusual world where English is the main language spoken. You could offer your services as a native English speaker by volunteering to work with refugees to help them improve their English language skills. To do this, you will usually need to gain a TESL (Teaching English as a Second Language) qualification, although this is not always necessary.
A majority of refugees arrive in the country with nothing but the clothes on their backs and perhaps some very basic supplies to last them a couple of days or less. You can help by donating some much needed-supplies, whether you clear out your closet and donate clothing that you no longer wear, or clear out your pantry to see if you have any food items that you could spare. Furniture, electronics, dishware, and tools are also needed by families who are settling down in a new country for the first time with very little.
Finally, there are several agencies and organizations that work directly with refugees to help them resettle, and there are often voluntary positions available. As a volunteer for a resettlement agency, you will be tasked with helping refugees settle down in their new country, including finding accommodation and employment where possible, getting healthcare, helping them find local amenities and community groups, and helping them learn a new culture.
If you are concerned about the plight of refugees from around the world, there are several things that you can do to help these people achieve the better life they are looking for.