Refugee Week, 20-26 June 2021
15 June 2021
A shared understanding
In 2021, celebrations for Refugee Week may take a different shape to the events of previous years, but the message of providing support for all refugees remains. This year’s theme is “Unity” and it illustrates that our need to work together as a global community has never been stronger.
The first official World Refugee Day (June 20) was held 20 years ago and since then Refugee Week has provided a platform to create a better understanding of the ways to enable refugees to integrate, live in safety and make a valuable contribution to Australia.
Refugee Week aims to educate the community about:
- Who refugees are and why they have come to Australia
- The many challenges refugees face in our country
- How the community can provide a safe and welcoming environment
Who supports World Refugee Day?
The Refugee Council of Australia is the national umbrella body for refugees and connects more than 200 organisations across the country. The council’s work centres around the key areas of policy, support for refugees and community education.
The council’s vision is: “For the voices of refugees to be heard, the rights of refugees to be respected, the humanity of refugees valued and the contribution of refugees celebrated.”
The council provides and resources and inspiration for Refugee Week lessons, events and activities through the Refugee Week website refugeeweek.org.au
How can your school get involved?
Share a Meal, Share a Story is a community fundraising initiative of the Refugee Council of Australia and encourages people to get together to share food and conversations that build empathy and understanding of refugee’s experiences.
Meals can be shared in classrooms, at home, and even online and discovering new meals can help us learn more about other cultures. To discover a new recipe click here and to hear a refugee’s story click here
The Face-to-Face program is co-presented by a speaker from a refugee background and a representative of the Refugee Council of Australia. Presentations are linked to the Australian curriculum and cover topics including:
- Who refugees are and where they come from
- Facts about refugees worldwide and in Australia
- The conditions refugees face overseas
- Australia’s refugee policies.
Schools can book speakers from the Face-to Face program as part of their virtual curriculum here
A number of organisations including the Australian Human Rights Commission, the Edmund Rice Centre and the Centre for Multicultural Youth provide curriculum-based resources for teachers.
Amnesty International Australia and Amnesty International UK have provided a series of classroom games and activities for students including border control role play scenarios, “time-to-flee” activities and an escape-themed board game.
Personal stories shared by refugees are also available as classroom resources.
classroom resources are available here
Events will be held across the country to celebrate Refuge Week, include screening of the movie Scattered People, seminars, guest speakers, urban and rural celebrations,
You can find an event near you or discover how to host your own here.