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On January 20th, a new president will be inaugurated providing opportunities to both address and correct the harms Trump levied against refugee resettlement, and to reimagine and build a more robust, inclusive, and equitable resettlement program.
Refugee Council USA (RCUSA) and Center for Migration Studies New York (CMSNY) conducted a series of national listening sessions bringing together resettled refugees, resettlement workers, and community and government partners to think about just this future. The result was a first-of-its-kind report detailing what was working, internal and external challenges facing the program, and how the program could be rebuilt.
There’s power in sharing your story, and advocates often emphasize getting personal when doing the work of building support around a cause. The personal is compelling, while facts often fall flat. Having the opportunity to share your story can drive change and be liberating. And it can also take a lot of emotional and mental energy, particularly when the part of your story you’re being asked to retell may be rooted in trauma, or hardships.
A group of refugees, stateless people, and asylees who advocate for humanitarian protections gather to get honest about their experiences sharing their personal stories for the movement; the times that have felt freeing, and the things they wish reporters would stop asking.