This week, B.C. & Mordant chat with Kristyn Peck. Kristyn is the Associate Director of Children’s Services for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Migration and Refugee Services. If you think her title is difficult to say, wait until you hear about the task she confronts each day.
With her background of more than 10 years as a social worker, Kristyn has found her calling helping refugees. She provides leadership and vision in the design and implementation of protection efforts for vulnerable migrating children. In her role, she oversees two large programs which provide residential care and family reunification services to unaccompanied refugees and migrating children.
“We are in a situation where the number of people who are forcibly displaced is higher than it ever has been,” she says, shedding light on a worldwide refugee crisis.
In her visits to refugee camps, she has seen the reality of the situation and now shares her stories of the things she witnessed. “The situation of Syrian refugees in the region is quite dire,” she says. Not only do they face limited access to food and water, but most children are also working to support their families. She describes seeing single mothers afraid to leave home for fear of being targeted for sexual assault.
But amidst the horror, there is hope. For Kristyn, resettlement is the answer to the refugee problem. “People are very resilient,” she says, “and when given the opportunity… children thrive. What I’ve seen through my work is that when given a permanent setting and a safe place and when provided with culturally appropriate services, these children are thriving.”
In this episode, she shares the remarkable story of a refugee who is overcoming tremendous odds. Accepted by the United States after witnessing the murder of his entire family, he is now dreaming of working for the United Nations. Tune in to hear his full story.
Only about 1% of the world’s refugees are resettled, and the United States is one of the only countries in the world that provides resettlement for unaccompanied child refugees.
Check out this episode to learn more about refugee resettlement efforts and how you can help. Find out about ways to support resettlement and how you can help shift the narrative to change hearts and minds about refugees.
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“What a Relief!” is the official podcast of Islamic Relief USA. Co-hosted by social media specialist B.C. Dodge & Mordant Mahon, IRUSA’s “What a Relief!” puts a human face on what’s going on in the world and how you can enact positive change in it. New episodes every week!
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