On Friday I had the chance to meet with the Mark Storella, the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration at the State Department. It was one of the most interesting conversations I have had in a long time and absolutely not what I expected. Long story short: the United States is awesome and we should be proud of all this country does for all human beings.
During our meeting we learned about all the agencies that work with the United States to assist individuals who have been impacted by conflict and disaster. Their work goes beyond resettlement and placement of refugees. Many of the agencies work to provide clean water, health care, job training, and educational opportunities around the world.
Since then I have been thinking about what educators can do to help students both understand the inner workings of our government and be part of humanitarian work around the globe.
I left the meeting with the realization that at the very least the job of educators is to help build awareness. Regardless of how you feel about refugee resettlement in the United States we have a responsibility to help students see all sides of an issue.
I found a few amazing resources that I am looking forward to digging into.