World Refugee Day

© Wendy Marijnissen 

Today is World Refugee Day. This years theme is: ‘Refugees have no choice. You do.’ It reminded me very much of the people I met in the camps after the floods destroyed so much in Pakistan and millions were displaced and forced to live in camps.

© Wendy Marijnissen

© Wendy Marijnissen

© Wendy Marijnissen

Like the slogan says… these refugees don’t have a choice. When your home is taken away from you either by a natural disaster, maybe by force, …whether you have to flee a war or whether it’s because of economic problems and you just look for a way for your family to survive….

Last week while on assignment, I met a Spanish man on the train back home. In Spain he used to be an osteopath and even guided pro cycling teams that competed in for instance the ‘Tour de France’.  With the economic crisis hitting Spain hard and hardly any jobs available anymore, he lost his job and come to Belgium to find work. He now is a guy that tries to sell sightseeing tours to tourists when they have just arrived in Brussels. It made me think about refugees and people coming to Europe in search of a better life. And it also teaches you to not judge a book by it’s cover and to think about the fact that all refugees have their stories.

© Wendy Marijnissen

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