Over 73,000 refugees from Myanmar have been settled in the United States since 2005. This program has been one UNHCR's largest, but it's now winding down. This particular news item caught my eye since many of our Make Welcome students are from Burma. And it's from hearing their stories and learning about their struggles that led me to get involved in the refugee community. Not only are these women amazingly resilient and brave; they're also wonderful friends and have taught me much more than I'll ever be able to teach them.
But just because the program is ending doesn't mean the refugees remaining in Thailand will have it any easier. Conditions are still not stable enough to repatriate to Burma. And there are still many, many people stuck in the frustrating confines of the camps. According to the report, "There are an estimated 120,000 Myanmar refugees remaining in the nine camps in Thailand, including more than 40,000 not registered by the Thai authorities."
Pray for Burma to have peace once again so that people can go home. Pray for those stuck in the limbo of the camps to have hope. And pray for those who were brought here grace and strength for their new lives.