Through this new partnership with JRS/USA, Any Refugee will now reach refugee children across the globe. (Any Refugee)
Jesuit Refugee Service/USA and Any Refugee are partnering to connect children in the U.S. with refugee children around the world by delivering messages of hope and solidarity through postcards.
Jesuit Refugee Service/USA is an international Catholic non-governmental organization whose mission is to accompany, serve and advocate for the rights of refugees and other forcibly displaced persons. JRS/USA operates education, psychosocial, livelihoods and emergency assistance programs in more than 45 countries and served 760,000 people in 2014.
Any Refugee is an effort begun in 2014 by 10-year-old William Scannell IV, from Anchorage, Alaska. After hearing a story from his father about how people used to be able to send letters addressed to “any soldier,” William took this idea and put it to work helping refugee children. He mobilized his school and church communities to write postcards to “any refugee,” generating thousands of postcards from across America and as far away as Australia.
In February 2015, William and his father traveled to Lebanon to visit educational programs coordinated by Jesuit Refugee Service, and hand delivered postcards to the Syrian refugee children they met. JRS has established several schools for refugees in Lebanon, offering an Accelerated Learning Program that provides intensive language, math and science classes to students aged five to 14. JRS also provides school meals, secures transportation for students and provides basic health and hygiene services.
“My trip to Lebanon was very cool and I will never forget it. I met children who had lost their mother or father or who had been out of school for a long time. They were happy and surprised to read our postcards and to know that we care.”
Through this new partnership with JRS/USA, Any Refugee will now reach refugee children across the globe. William will continue to speak with, and engage, communities in the U.S. on the needs of refugee children drawing attention to this important issue. Children in the U.S. are encouraged to write postcards to their counterparts across the globe and JRS will facilitate sending the postcards to the children it serves.
“We are thrilled to partner with Any Refugee and work with William to raise awareness about the plight of refugees. Part of the mission of JRS is to accompany refugees and the postcards are a tremendous way to share the message that these refugees are not forgotten,” said Armando Borja, Regional Director of JRS North America.
To write and send a postcard to a refugee child, visit www.anyrefugee.org.
For more information, contact Giulia McPherson, Assistant Policy Director, JRS/USA at email@example.com or 202-629-5942.