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Media advisory: World Refugee Day 2016
June 16, 2016

Media advisory: World Refugee Day 2016
A refugee from Central African Republic who attends the JRS school in Cameroon (Denis Bosnic / Jesuit Refugee Service)
(Rome) June 16, 2016 – This World Refugee Day (Monday, June 20) Jesuit Refugee Service calls upon all of us not only to provide refugees with a safe place to stay, but with opportunities to grow and contribute to society. To truly protect means keeping people safe from all evils, including poverty, isolation, exploitation, misconception and neglect. For this reason, this year JRS is using the theme, Open minds, unlock potential.

On April 19, in a video message, Pope Francis told JRS to continue walking with refugees. On June 20, JRS will be releasing a short video with the words of Pope Francis and of refugees worldwide telling – in their words – what being a refugee actually means.

"When I hear people use the word 'refugee' or 'foreigner', it just makes me realize then how people won't accept me for who I am,” said Valerie, a refugee from the Democratic Republic of Congo. “They know I'm a refugee, but they make it sound like a bad thing."

We must genuinely open ourselves, our minds and our communities to unlock our potential as a society. On World Refugee Day, for the Jubilee year, let's take the opportunity to mobilize our compassion and put our mercy in motion.

For more information: 

Christian Fuchs, Communications Director, Jesuit Refugee Service/USA,, (202) 629-5946; or Sean Lengell, Communications Officer, Jesuit Refugee Service/USA,, (202) – 629-5931.

Note to editors: 

The Jesuit Refugee Service program are found in nearly 50 countries, providing assistance to refugees, internally displaced persons, asylum seekers and those held in detention centers. The main areas of work are in the field of education, psychosocial support, emergency assistance, healthcare, livelihood activities and social services.

The JRS Mercy in Motion campaign aims to provide 100,000 additional refugee children and youth with access to education by the year 2020. The campaign, launched on Dec. 8 2015 in conjunction with the Holy Year of Mercy, will continue through the end of 2016. For more information go to and #mercyinmotion.

Press Contact Information
Mr Sean Lengell