25 Sep The Refugee Crisis is Real
As an American, we really only hear about the refugee problem on the news. We’ve heard that countries in Europe and others like Canada are opening their borders. We may have also heard of an odd few of the refugees that are committing crimes or even acts of terrorism. But overall, we are essentially oblivious to the genuine hardship of these people as they flee their countries in order to save themselves and their families. I must admit, I was one of those people just reading the news with some pie in the sky assumption that the problem would somehow surely sort itself out in due time.
About a month ago, I moved to Paris. It is a beautiful city with charm, history, lights, love, and refugees. As an American who has lived in LA, I am used to seeing homeless people. Sadly, this is a common sight. What I am not used to seeing are families with children and babies huddled together on a mattress with all of their worldly possessions littered along the streets of Paris like forgotten refuse. It is beyond heart-breaking to see women trying to feed and diaper their children on a dirty sidewalk or watching the eldest child beg for money to feed their family. This scene has opened my eyes to the overwhelming needs these refugees have just to maintain their basic requirements.
Paris and other countries have opened their borders and offered asylum to so many of these people who have lost their homes, their countries, their jobs, and their hope. Now winter is approaching, and these people will be in more dire straits. Although we may look at this refugee situation and think, “It’s not my problem,” I would say that there are two sides to that. In theory, it isn’t one person’s problem. But as global citizens, we are all brothers and sisters. So the problem doesn’t belong to one, it belongs to all of us.
When we turn a blind eye to those in need, we are all only then to blame for what comes to be. People in need are desperate. They are hungry. They will do whatever it takes to meet their basics fundamental needs of food, water, shelter, and clothing. So why not help eliminate some of the challenges that the less fortunate have by giving what you can? If you have money to give, that is wonderful. However, it isn’t always the best answer. Consider these other options…why not go to your closet and pull out the old blankets and pillows you no longer use or the clothes you no longer wear and share those? Pack up some nutritious lunches and hand those out. You could even take some canned or dry goods, diapers, Tampax, or baby formula to your local food pantry. There are so many ways that you can contribute. But sitting by (as I did) and hoping that some magical unicorn with fairy dust would make the refugee problem go away is not the answer. I am reminded of a simple saying by a famous guru that said, “Love all, serve all.” We must remember that at the end of the day, we are all in this together. When we forget this, we become part of the problem, not part of the solution. We are only one individually, but together, we are family. #LoveAllServeAll #WithRefugees #BelongAnywhere #Volunteer #Give #Help #Love #StartaMovement #Family #World #MakeaDifference