United Nations High Commission for Refugees
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees is dedicated to…you guessed it…refugees. It is mandated by its parent organization, the United Nations, “to coordinate international action for the worldwide protection of refugees and the resolution of refugee problems.” The services that they provide are wide ranging, from providing food water and shelter to those fleeing conflict, to helping refugees integrate into the communities they were relocated to. This broad scope will allow you, members of the UNHCR at this year’s conference to be creative with your resolutions.
In order to engage in a constructive dialogue as members of UNHCR, you must first have a solid understanding of how it became to be. It got its start shortly after the Second World War. The United Nations created the organization to help deal with the massive dislocation of Europeans. The interesting thing being that it was only supposed to last for 3 years. Sixty-six years later the organization is still going strong! Over the years the scope of the UNHCR has expanded significantly to include other demographics such as displaced peoples and stateless people. Worldwide, there are currently 21.3 million refugees, 65.4 million forcibly displaced peoples, and 10 million stateless peoples who have been denied a nationality. That brings the total number of people worldwide who are within the scope of the UNHCR to 96.6 million. To put that in perspective, that’s roughly 131 times the population of Alaska. I look forward to seeing you all at this year’s Model United Nations conference.
- Relocation case study: Refuges coming to Alaska http://www.slate.com/articles/life/tomorrows_test/2016/06/the_newcomers_center_has_made_anchorage_alaska_one_of_the_best_school_districts.html