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Refugees Around the World, and How Translators Can Help

20 June is World Refugee Day. To mark the occasion, the UN is hosting events in cities and refugee camps around the world. The goal is to show support for refugees and to increase awareness of this global problem.

With that in mind, here are some shocking statistics about refugees around the world, and some ways that translators can help.

By the end of 2017, there were 68.5 million forcibly displaced people in the world. All of these people were driven from their homes by persecution, conflict, violence, or human rights violations.

  • 40 million were internally displaced, which means they had to leave their homes but remained in their home countries.
  • 25.4 million had to abandon their countries, making them refugees.  This figure is the highest ever recorded, and it’s a 10 per cent increase over 2016.
  • 3.1 million sought asylum in another country.

In 2017 alone, war, violence and persecution drove 16.2 million people from their homes.

That’s 44,400 people a day, and it’s the highest number that the United Nations High Commissioner has ever recorded. 11.8 million people stayed in their own countries; 4.4 million left their countries to become refugees or seek asylum elsewhere.

52% of refugees are children.

These children have witnessed violence and war firsthand. They’ve lost their homes and their friends and had their schooling interrupted.  According to the UN, refugee children are more than five times more likely to not be in school than children in the general population.

Many of them have also lost their parents. The statistics include 173,800 children who were unaccompanied or became separated from their families as they fled.  Read more