Observed annually on June 20 since 2001, World Refugee Day is designed to raise awareness of the situation facing refugees throughout the world. ECDC marks, World Refugee Day this year by hosting a photo exhibition entitled African Journeyswhich recognizes the unique stories and contributions of African refugees resettled in the DC metropolitan area. The event will be held on Monday June 18 at Ethiopic Restaurant at 401 H St. NE Washington, DC 20002, and will include refreshments and music.
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees estimates that there are 15.4 million refugees worldwide, while only 1% of the world’s refugees are resettled to a third country. Last fiscal year, the United States resettled 56,424 refugees.
ECDC is a community-based organization established in 1983 to promote cultural, educational and socio-economic development programs that help refugees and immigrants become productive members of their new homeland. ECDC is based in Arlington, VA and operates through a network of 16 immigrant-led affiliate and branch offices across the country. ECDC’s founder and President, Dr. Tsehaye Teferra, was recently selected as a “White House Champion of Change.” ECDC has resettled over 25,000 refugees in the United States, and has provided social services to thousands more.
African immigrants comprise a rapidly growing segment of the U.S. population. There are currently over 1.5 million African immigrants residing in the United States.