“Children for Tomorrow” celebrates 15th anniversary – Highest number of refugees in two decades
On the sunniest day of the year, our foundation “Children for Tomorrow” celebrated its 15th anniversary. Many refugee children and supporters joined our team for this special occasion. Everyone enjoyed music, games in the garden, prizes and delicious food. Since opening our doors two years ago, our foundation headquarters has become a stable environment for refugee children to come together as a center of exchange to heal their inner wounds.
The past few months has seen a vast rise in numbers at our facility with the increased violence of the Afghan Syrian war. Many of these refugees come to our clinic after months on the run with harrowing stories of the cruelty they experience during their escape, often worse than the warfare conditions in their home countries.
Just this week the UNHCR published a report which directly mirrors our noticeable increase: the number of refugees has reached a 20 year new record high. More than 45 million people in the world are fleeing – equal to more than half of Germany’s population! The main cause is war with most refugees on the run from war-ridden areas like Afghanistan, Somalia, Iraq or Syria. More than 15 million of these people fled to other countries, Germany ranks third after Pakistan and Iran at taking them in. Last year almost 590,000 refugees came to Germany.
Almost 46 percent of the refugees are children and adolescents under the age of 18. António Guterres, UN High Commissioner, said that the fact that children escape on their own is becoming “one of the most difficult humanitarian problems”. In 2012 more than 21,300 unaccompanied children under 18 applied for asylum, the highest number ever registered.
These numbers remind us strongly of the responsibility of “Children for Tomorrow” and point out our future challenges. Estimations suggest that the numbers will increase in 2013. The UNO assesses the number of refugees from the Syrian war alone to be in the millions.
At our Hamburg location we are one of the few facilities in the country providing translators for refugee children and dedicate ourselves to the new surge of children who will find the best possible psycho-therapeutic treatment to heal their inner wounds with our team.