June 20 is World Refugee Day—a day to honor all people who have been displaced.

Syrians. Eritreans. South Sudanese. Yemeni. Guatemalans. Rohingya. And so many more.

War, persecution, and violence are creating worldwide forced displacement unseen since World War II. According to the latest United Nations data, 25.9 million people are considered refugees, uprooted from their home countries and thrust into a legal limbo. People from all walks of life have been shut off from opportunities that would allow them to build better futures. Today, more than ever, this deep systemic injustice requires a global and local response.

What is it like to be a refugee?

“I say refugees are human beings, who have lost their home. Home… that gives us the sense of belonging, identity, and safety. Human beings who have been separated from their family and loved ones. Human beings who do not get a chance to live like all humans should.” - Jyoti Gurung, storyteller, community leader, and Refugee Transitions staff, former Bhutanese refugee from Nepal.

Despite an urgent need for resettlement, the U.S. is closing its doors on refugees.

Nativist sentiment in Global North countries like the U.S. has disrupted long-standing traditions of providing safe haven to the displaced. Even though two-thirds of Americans support taking in refugees, the Trump administration has committed to only resettling 30,000 this year.

Past U.S. Presidents’ highest refugee admissions ceilings: Ronald Reagan 140,000; George H. W. Bush 142,000; Bill Clinton 121,000; George W. Bush 80,000; Barack Obama 110,000.

Our goal is to help recreate the sense of dignity, safety, and belonging.

With the support of our community members (such as YOU!), RT continues to welcome refugees, as well as asylum-seekers and immigrants regardless of documented status. We recognize that getting adjusted to an unfamiliar society is a challenging process, so we serve both new arrivals and those who’ve lived in the Bay Area for some time. Our students can count on RT to meet them “where they’re at” on their pathways to education, employment, citizenship, and community engagement.

Our staff and community leaders provide multilingual and multicultural support in common languages of local refugee and immigrant communities, including Arabic, Burmese, Dari, Farsi, Mam, Nepali, Pashto, and Spanish. We work in partnership with our community to honor all forced migrants and to ensure they feel safe and welcome in their new home.

Meet community leaders who’ve sought refuge in the U.S.

AuthorAndrew Bogrand
CategoriesRT News