IRC in the News
Advocates for refugees, the environment and victims of sexual violence earned prominent berths on Thursday in a list of the world's greatest leaders published each year by Fortunemagazine in a tribute to their values, effectiveness and commitment.
Henry E. Lackey High School students are helping raise approximately $16,000 for Syrian refugees by making more than 6,630 paper pinwheels to help brighten the lives of children forced from their home due to the country’s five-year internal conflict.
When she was 13 years old, Moza Yena moved to Clarkston, Georgia as a refugee from the Democratic Republic of Congo. Now 18, this teenager is facing one of the most universal experiences of American teenage life: high school prom.
“The first time I heard about prom, based on how someone described it to me,” Yena said, “it’s a type of formal dance where you go with your class and you have fun.”
This year, Yena will be modeling a dressy red gown on the dance floor at her senior prom. She picked out her dress through the International Rescue Committee, a local refugee resettlement organization. This was the organization’s second prom dress drive, in which the organization passed along gently used donated dresses to the young refugee women in its after-school program at Clarkston High School.
“Every home is a school for a girl; every mother is a teacher. We will show them how to manage. We won’t let our girls go through the same things that we have.”
Now that it’s a reality, there’s much work to be done before a refugee resettlement office is up and running in Missoula.
“There’s a process through the (U.S.) State Department, which is already occurring, but it’s not instant,” Bob Johnson of the Seattle office of the International Rescue Committee said this week.
The IRC announced last week it had the go-ahead from the State Department to lay the groundwork to establish an office in Missoula for the second time. Johnson was at the ground level when the first one opened in 1979 to help hundreds of people fleeing persecution in Southeast Asia – most of them Hmong from the highlands of Laos – after the Vietnam War.
All new arrivals in Greece are being taken to registration centres set up on five Aegean islands.
Those seeking asylum will stay there while their application is considered by Greek and European officials.
Medical charity Doctors Without Borders (MSF), the UN refugee agency, the International Rescue Committee and the Norwegian Refugee Council have all criticised the EU-Turkey deal on ethical grounds and scaled back some of their activities.
Her Majesty Queen Rania visited the northern border city of Ramtha on Wednesday, where she met with Syrian refugees and heads of local charity organisations working in the area, some 90km north of the capital.
Her Majesty began her visit at the Women’s Protection and Empowerment Centre, run by the International Rescue Committee (IRC).
More aid agencies helping refugees and migrants arriving in Greece said they were joining a boycott of detention centres on Wednesday, angered at an EU deal they say runs roughshod over human rights.
Human rights organisations reject the pact between the European Union and Turkey to fast-track registration and asylum applications, under which hundreds of new arrivals have been detained since Sunday. Refugees or migrants whose applications fail will be sent back to Turkey.
Aid agencies said cooperating with the Greeks at detention centres would make them complicit with an "unfair and inhumane" practise.
Two aid agencies said on Wednesday they were following the U.N. refugee agency UNHCR and aid organisation Medicins Sans Frontieres (MSF), a major contributor to the relief effort, which both announced on Tuesday they would cut back assistance.
"The IRC alerted the (Greek) coast guard on Monday that we would not transport the world's most vulnerable people to a place where their freedom of movement is impeded upon," said Lucy Carrigan, a regional spokeswoman for the International Rescue Committee (IRC).