Sharjah International Award for Refugee Advocacy and Support
RefuSHE was founded in 2008 to address the significant, unmet needs for child and girl-focused refugee services in Nairobi. RefuSHE recognized that the already precarious status of refugees in Kenya is compounded for unaccompanied minors, especially girls who are highly vulnerable to exploitation and sexual and gender-based violence. Too often, many of these girls and young women fall through the cracks of refugee camps and organizations, eventually arriving in Nairobi after dangerous journeys, and without family, support, or resources to rebuild their lives – often pregnant or with their own young children.
RefuSHE’s mission is to protect, educate, and empower orphaned, unaccompanied, or separated refugee girls and young women. To help them build healthier and more resilient futures for themselves and their children.
RefuSHE’s programs are designed to meet refugee girls urgent and immediate needs for safety, shelter, and healthcare while also ensuring they can work towards building skills, confidence, and a livelihood. RefuSHE’s interventions are rights-based, trauma-informed, and girl-centric to provide high-quality support specifically tailored for this vulnerable group of refugees.
The organization’s inter-disciplinary and holistic approach not only treats symptoms of exclusion but also addresses the entire refugee experience. RefuSHE’s programs include shelter, psychosocial counseling, individualized case management, specialized education, early childhood development, parenting and life-skills classes, vocational training, the opportunity to join a social enterprise, advocacy and legal support, and community outreach programs.
Tumaini Letu, Malawi
Tumaini Letu “Our Hope” is a nonprofit organization based in Malawi’s Dzaleka Refugee Camp, which promotes cultural exchange among refugees and host communities. Its flagship program is the annual Tumaini Festival, the largest cultural festival in Malawi, which transforms Dzaleka Refugee Camp into an international festival ground that draws thousands of people to Dzaleka. The festival celebrates intercultural harmony, mutual understanding, and peaceful co-existence through musical and cultural performances by artists from Dzaleka, Malawi and around the world. In 2019, the sixth edition of Tumaini Festival had an estimated 35,000 attendees representing camp refugees as well as guests from different regions across Malawi and Africa.
Tumaini Letu was founded in 2012 by Trésor Nzengu Mpauni, widely known as ‘Menes la Plume’, a multi-lingual slam poet, hip-hop artist, and writer born in Lubumbashi, in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). In 2008 he was forced to move to Malawi and now resides in Dzaleka Refugee Camp. One of his main missions is to use the power of words, music and culture to raise awareness about issues surrounding refugees, and to promote unity.
Through the festival and surrounding work, Tumaini Letu supports cultural development, cultural education, entrepreneurship, youth engagement and numerous other activities to over 41,000 camp residents. It has had a profound impact on the perceptions of refugees and their interactions with host communities.
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Amel Association International, Lebanon
Amel Association is a Lebanese non-profit, non-sectarian organization committed to human rights since 1979. One of its main objectives is to endorse and encourage a sense of belonging and citizenship in Lebanese and Arab communities. This sense stems from the maintenance of individual civil rights, and protection from all forms of discrimination based on colour, religion, or political affiliation and it is the first Lebanese NGO to be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.
With its experience of over 30 years in Lebanon, Amel became an International association on December 15, 2010 and was registered in the directory of international NGOs. The purpose was to share experiences around the world and to strengthen its collaborations with other international NGOs. Thus Amel Association acquired the status of International association registered in Geneva.
Amel’s work with refugees has been part of its core mandate since its creation. Initially supporting Lebanese and displaced Lebanese, Amel has expanded its scope of action in solidarity with vulnerable populations, providing humanitarian aid to refugee communities, irrespective of nationality, across the entire country. The programs implemented by Amel cover different sectors such as health, food security, education, protection, gender and rural development, and livelihoods.
Amel’s aim is to support refugees in covering their basic needs, as well as empowering them to rebuild their lives and contribute to the development of their societies, for that Amel cooperates with the new actors of humanitarian aid and uses technology to better serve beneficiaries, such as (the Synchronous IVR Radio for instance). Moreover, it establishes innovative projects which allow greater reach and impact, such as its two mobile education units. The "educational bus" visits the Syrian refugees camps to deliver educational activities for the children.
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Dignity for Children Foundation, Malaysia
In 1998 founders Elisha Satvinder and his wife Petrina, discovered many underprivileged families in the Sentul area of Malaysia, many of whom were refugees. Concerned for their welfare they started to reach out to the community through basic home improvement services, grocery distribution, arrangement of free medical check-ups, raising support for school supplies, job placement and counselling. They started the initiative in their own house when very few individuals knew about refugees.
They realized that with the limited resources at their disposal, their contributions would not bring about the results they wanted to see. Believing that quality education was the key to breaking the cycle of poverty they started to focus their efforts on education. What began as simple tuition classes in 1998 began to attract daily attendance of over 50 students, however children who were already behind continued to struggle, so their focus started to include toddlers and preschool children. His work was done under name of Harvest Centre in 2003 and the first Montessori preschool for the underprivileged opened its doors to 30 students in January 2004. As education programmes began to grow, the primary and secondary education programmes were added.
In 2010, all Harvest Centre education projects came under the name of Dignity.
Sustainable Development Foundation, Yemen
Since 2003, the Sustainable Development Foundation (SDF) started working as a team in the voluntary and development operations in Yemen. As a result of the vast experiences acquired over time, SDF established an independent foundation, The Sustainable Development Foundation, which is completely focused on Sustainable Development Goals and Humanitarian Response. SDF has eight offices in different governorates in Yemen and is officially registered with the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labour.
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