Our photo library in Geneva is the world's largest collection of refugee-related photos covering nearly all of the major displacements of the last 60 years. These images provide a comprehensive portrait of the lives of refugees, asylum seekers, internally displaced people and the stateless in all corners of the globe, as well as the work of thousands of UN staff who have helped them. Most photos are showcased here and on Flickr. We offer the use of our photos free to the media - please just remember to credit us!
The Most Important Thing - UNHCR UK
Added 08 Aug 2013
Refugees can be forced to flee their home in a moment's notice. There is often little, or no time, to take any belongings with you. We've been asking people across the world to put themselves in the shoes of a refugee, and tell us what one item they would take if they were forced to flee.
Here are items the people at UNHCR UK chose. For more #1thing galleries, take a look at our Pinterest board.
Send us a photo of the 1 Thing you would take, either on Facebook or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org, and we'll include your contribution in our UK gallery!
The Most Important Thing – Malian Refugees in Burkina Faso
Added 04 Jul 2013
“The Most Important Thing” documents – in words and pictures – some of the tough decisions people face when they have to flee their home. With support from UNHCR, American photographer Brian Sokol began the project in South Sudan, taking portraits of Sudanese refugees carrying the most valuable possession they brought with them into exile. He also asked them to explain their decision. Sokol continued with Syrian refugees in Iraq and in this photo essay looks at Malians in refugee camps in neighbouring Burkina Faso. While the photographs may reveal a fair amount about the subjects, it is their words – their stories – that share far more.
For the Sudanese, the most important things were primarily objects to keep them alive during their long, difficult journey: a pot, an axe, a water jug or a basket. For Syrians, the objects were largely sentimental: an old ring, a torn photograph, the key to a door that may no longer exist. Among the Malians depicted in this photo gallery, the objects largely had to do with their cultural identity. They spoke of how the items helped them to still feel part of their people, despite being forced into exile.
UNHCR Special Envoy Angelina Jolie meets with Syrian refugees in Jordan
Added 19 Jun 2013
UNHCR Special Envoy Angelina Jolie traveled to Jordan's border with Syria on 18 June at the start of a visit to mark World Refugee Day. She met with refugees as they were arriving and listened to their stories of escape.She urged the international community to do more to help the survivors of the conflict and the countries hosting them. "The worst humanitarian crisis of the 21st century is unfolding in the Middle East today,” she said.“The international response to this crisis falls short of the vast scale of this human tragedy. Much more humanitarian aid is needed, and above all, a political settlement to this conflict must be found.” The war in Syria forced more people to flee last year than any other conflict in the world. In the past six months, the number has more than doubled to 1.6 million, of whom 540,000 are in Jordan. During her visit to Jordan, Ms. Jolie will join the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, António Guterres, to meet with government officials and refugees.
All photos: UNHCR/O.Laban-Mattei/June 2013