Refugee week 2022: History, theme and events taking place in London

·3-min read
Refugees from Ukraine wait for the bus after crossing Ukrainian-Polish border in Medyka (AFP via Getty Images)
Refugees from Ukraine wait for the bus after crossing Ukrainian-Polish border in Medyka (AFP via Getty Images)

Refugee Week is celebrated each year across the United Kingdom in June, in a bid to foster welcome, community, and solidarity.

It is a UK-wide festival, that aims to celebrate the contributions, creativity and resilience of refugees and people seeking sanctuary.

We are currently in the midst of a refugee crisis, as more than 3 million people have been forced to leave their homes in Ukraine since the Russian invasion in February.

Many Britons have since registered to offer their homes to Ukrainian refugees fleeing the Russian invasion, after more than 88,000 people signed up for the government’s Homes for Ukraine scheme.

Last week, a plane that was set to take refugees who’ve entered Britain illegally to Rwanda was grounded, after a dramatic last-minute intervention by the ECHR.

This year, the events will take place from 20 - 26 June, to coincide with World Refugee Day, on June 20.

But what exactly is Refugee Week, what’s this year’s theme, and what events are taking place?

When is Refugee Week 2022?

Refugee Week 2022 takes place from 20 - 26 of June, and anyone can take part, by holding an event or taking part in an activity.

Last year, the event took place from 14 - 20 June, and it focused on the power of inclusion, as the world reopened after the Covid-19 pandemic.

What is the theme of Refugee Week 2022?

The theme for this year’s Refugee Week is ‘healing’, which will be explored through creativity, with an aim to show that the human spirit can persevere through whatever is thrown at it.

Healing means being able to recover from a painful situation or experience, in order to keep living and moving forward.

This year’s week aims to encourage people to learn from refugees about how to continue when “going on seems impossible”, as well as how “art, creativity and community” can help people to heal.

They added: “We have much to learn from refugees about holding on to hope when continuing can feel impossible. Whether it’s looking after ourselves and each other at difficult times, or overcoming political divisions, healing matters to us all.”

Another aim of the week is to investigate how “art, community, and creativity can help us to heal and regenerate.”

What is the history of Refugee Week?

Refugee Week was founded in 1998 and is held every year around World Refugee Day on the 20 June, Refugee Week is also a growing global movement.

What events are taking place in London for Refugee Week 2022?

There are a whole range of events taking place across London and the rest of the country for Refugee Week 2022.

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