In August and September, children across the United States fill unused back packs with new pencils and notebooks, take a reluctant first-day photo, and head back to school. During this time, as we feel the excitement of a new academic year and the start of endless opportunities, it is important to reflect on the importance of education to all people, especially the most vulnerable in our world – displaced people.
At Jesuit Refugee Service, we are committed to education for refugees and displaced people. We provide educational services and believe that everyone, especially those forced to flee their homes, have the right to an education. JRS serves families and children in traditional pre-primary, primary, secondary, and tertiary education programs, but also works to provide better access to formal, informal skill-building, and vocational training programs for refugee children, youth, and adults. We understand that education during times of conflict and crisis provides vulnerable children and adults an opportunity to re-build their communities and create more hopeful futures.
In the coming weeks, to celebrate and recognize this time of year, we’ll be sharing stories and resources from our encounters with refugees and experience providing education for refugees around the world. We invite you to help learn more about refugee education, share stories of why refugee education is so important, and give the gift of education through our online Global Education Initiative Gift Catalog. You can purchase items like a new pair of school shoes for a refugee child for $25 or provide a whole classroom with textbooks for $100. With your support, we can give more students a seat in the classroom.