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UNHCR goodwill ambassador Marta Dusseldorp urges support for refugees

UNHCR goodwill ambassador Marta Dusseldorp urges support for refugees

With the global COVID-19 pandemic now in full flight, 60 million refugees around the world are at high risk of contracting the disease due to their crowded living conditions and lack of hygiene.

UNHCR goodwill ambassador Marta Dusseldorp urges support for refugees

The public health measures we’re all being encouraged to follow such as social distancing, proper hand washing, and self-isolation are impossible or extremely difficult to implement in refugee camps. If no measures to improve their living conditions are put in place very soon, international aid agencies are concerned there will be increasing outbreaks of COVID-19 in the camps.

As a goodwill ambassador for refugee agency UNHCR, actor Marta Dusseldorp is passionate about raising awareness for the plight of refugees and the good work done by the international aid organisation.

“It’s such a privilege to have access to these refugee communities and these people who are so open and so vulnerable and it allows you the chance to understand that they are just living in extraordinary circumstances,” Dusseldorp told MiNDFOOD. “Nobody chooses to be a refugee. Every single one of them says, ‘I just want to go home’.”

Dusseldorp recently visited Kyaka refugee camp in Uganda with her two daughters ­– Grace, 13 and Maggie, 10 ­– so they could gain a better understanding of the extent of the problem. 

“There are more refugees now than after WWII, it’s not changing, it’s not going away and we need to be there to support and give people back their dignity and any semblance of the life that they had to help them until they can get back to that,” she says.

“My daughters are not afraid to look into people’s pain and have compassion for that so I’m hoping that they will grow up to be compassionate, open-minded fabulous women who change the world for better.”

unrefugees.org.au/covid19

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