Can you imagine becoming a refugee, needing to leave your house suddenly with no plans, little idea of where to go, and the knowledge that you may never return? Every day children and their families are being forced to flee their homes, communities, and countries around the world just to stay alive. Today, June 20th, is World Refugee Day, held by the United Nations every year to commemorate the strength, courage, and perseverance of millions of refugees. How can we talk about this reality with children? Here are a few helpful resources:
RefugeeOne has put together a fantastic downloadable PDF entitled Literature for Children and Adolescents about the Refugee and Immigrant Experience. It’s sorted by age groups, mainly according to reading level.
Bridging Refugee Youth and Children’s Services (BRYCS) has curated an extensive list of Children’s Books about the Refugee/Immigrant Experience.
Author Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich has compiled a list of Books to Help Kids Understand What It’s Like to Be a Refugee for Brightly.
The Seattle Kids Librarians at The Seattle Public Library have compiled a list called The Immigrant and Refugee Experience in Children’s Books.
The Institute for Humane Education has put together this list of 16 Children’s Picture Books About Refugees.
And, last but not least, Goodreads has a HUGE list of Popular Refugee Books.
We would want someone to help us if we were in a similar situation, so let’s do the same for them and respond to refugees with solidarity, compassion, and action. Books can be a great place to start.