World Refugee Day

World Refugee Day Quick Facts - NG

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2024 Date20 June 2024
2025 Date20 June 2025

World Refugee Day

World Refugee Day in

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World Refugee Day History

World Refugee Day is an observance dedicated to raising awareness of the plight of refugees across the world. The day serves as an opportunity for people, governments, and organizations to express solidarity with those forced to flee their homes due to violence, persecution, or disasters. Annually, millions of lives are uprooted, creating an urgent need for humanitarian assistance, protection, and long-term solutions for displaced individuals and their host communities.

The United Nations General Assembly officially declared World Refugee Day on December 4, 2000. For Nigerians, it is crucial to recognize and understand the challenges faced by refugees, considering the various internal and external crisis situations within the country and its neighboring nations. Nigeria faces numerous security threats, from the Boko Haram insurgency in the northeast to the unrest in the Niger Delta region, which have contributed to the displacement of millions of innocent civilians. By observing this day, Nigerians can express compassion and support to refugees, promote peaceful coexistence, and work together in addressing the root causes of conflict and displacement.

Typical observance of World Refugee Day in Nigeria includes events coordinated by government agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and private individuals. Activities may range from public lectures, panel discussions, cultural exhibitions, and charity drives aimed at promoting understanding, tolerance, and empathy for those forcibly displaced. Social media campaigns, sporting events, and art contests may also be organized to create awareness and advocate for the rights and wellbeing of refugees. As Nigeria continues to struggle with internal and external displacement crises, it is of utmost importance that citizens actively participate in the observance of World Refugee Day, lending their voices and resources to support and uplift the displaced and their host communities. World Refugee Day is observed on June 20th annually.

World Refugee Day facts

  • The theme for World Refugee Day in 2023 was hope away from home.
    The theme in 2022 was Everyone Has the Right to Seek Safety.
  • 86% of the world’s refugees are hosted by developing countries.
  • According to the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC), there were approximately 2.5 million Internally Displaced Persons in Nigeria as a result of the Boko Haram insurgency of 2017.
  • Nigeria hosts refugees from neighboring countries, including Cameroon, Niger, and Chad, while many Nigerian refugees have sought asylum in these same neighboring nations. This cross-border displacement adds to the complexity of the overall refugee situation in the region.

Top things to do in Nigeria for World Refugee Day

  • Share the hashtags #WorldRefugeeDay and #RefugeeStrong on social media to spread awareness.
  • Donate or volunteer for the UN Refugee Agency. All proceeds and time go toward helping resettle current and future refugees so that they have safe and healthy lives.
  • Watch a documentary to learn more about refugees in Nigeria. Here are our top picks:
    1. In the Shadow of Boko Haram. This documentary explores the lives of displaced people in northeastern Nigeria who are caught in the violent conflict with the Islamic extremist group Boko Haram.
    2. The Lost Boys: Nigeria's Child Soldiers. This Al Jazeera documentary follows the story of children in Northeast Nigeria who have been kidnapped and forced to become child soldiers by extremist groups.
    3. Nowhere to Run: Nigeria's Climate and Environmental Crisis. This documentary narrates the climate change and environmental crises in Nigeria, which are causing communities to flee their homes and create a new category of refugees known as climate refugees.
  • Read a book to learn more about refugees in Nigeria. Here are our suggestions:
    1. Forced Migration in Nigeria: Causes and Consequences edited by Aderanti Adepoju
    2. Children on the Move in the Wake of the Boko Haram Insurgency in Nigeria by Theresa Amobi
    3. Boko Haram and Its Suicide Squad: The Confounding Relationship of Islam, Politics, and Underdevelopment in Nigeria by Obasesam Okoi and Philip Afaha
    4. Refugee Management Policies: An Analytical Study of the UN and Nigerian Government's Management of Lake Chad Basin Refugees by Dansuma Dauda, Idris Ahmed Agbabiaka, and Bilqis Ayo Lawal

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