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World Refugee Day

On World Refugee Day, held every year on June 20, we commemorate the strength, courage and perseverance of millions of refugees.

What is World Refugee Day?

World Refugee Day was first celebrated on June 20, 2001 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees. On World Refugee Day, we celebrate refugees' contributions and seek to build empathy and understanding for their plight and their resilience to build a bright future.

World Refugee Day 2024

Hope away from home – a world where refugees are always included

By the end of 2023, more than 114 million people were forcibly displaced globally — a record number propelled by the war in Ukraine and other conflicts around the world. For millions of refugees who are forcibly displaced each year due to conflict, violence and persecution, fleeing is the first step in a long and difficult journey to finding safety.

With a record number of people forced to flee their homes, the international community must work together to give refugees more hope and more opportunities while they are away from home. The most effective way to support refugees is by including them in the communities where they have found safety — this means ensuring they can apply for jobs, enroll in schools and access services like housing and healthcare. Inclusion paves the way for long-term solutions for refugees and displaced people, allowing them to thrive in a new country or preparing them for a safe return to their home countries.

On World Refugee Day, let’s commit to including refugees in our schools, workplaces, healthcare systems and beyond. Use the hashtags #WorldRefugeeDay, #WithRefugees and #RefugeeDay on social media to honor refugees and displaced people by amplifying their voices and experiences.

Storyteller Celebration

Every World Refugee Day, USA for UNHCR centers the voices of young refugees and refugee allies from across the United States through our Storyteller Celebration. This year, our featured storytellers are Lucky Karim and Kyle Kvamme. Learn more about their stories and follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook for updates on World Refugee Day!

Lucky Karim is a 20-year-old Rohingya refugee and advocate who lives in the United States. At a young age, she took on the responsibility of helping her family and community after they fled violence and persecution in Myanmar. From a refugee camp to the halls of Congress now, Lucky continues to advocate for the rights of her Rohingya community.

Kyle Kvamme is a refugee ally who works at ORAM, an organization that supports LGBTQIA+ refugees. Kyle’s dedication to being an advocate for LGBTQIA+ refugees stems from his own identity and his friendship with Juan, a gay asylum seeker from Venezuela. 


Meet our featured storytellers from 2023: 


Meet our featured storytellers from 2022: Haya and Ghena, and allies Maggie, Rashika and Hadia.


Meet our featured storytellers from 2021:

"World Refugee Day is an expression of solidarity with people who have been uprooted from their homes by war or persecution . . . This not about sharing a burden. It is about sharing a global responsibility, based not only the broad idea of our common humanity but also on the very specific obligations of international law.” 

–António Guterres, UN Secretary-General

Help Refugee Families

As a monthly donor, you'll become one of our most valued partners, and you’ll know that every day you are helping to bring hope, comfort and support to the world's most vulnerable people.

SPOTLIGHT: This World Refugee Day, meet Lucky, a brave Rohingya refugee making an incredible impact! READ →