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20 Ways to Learn More About Refugees

Around the world, 103 million people have been forcibly displaced from their homes — the highest number in recorded history. Of those, 32.5 million are considered refugees, having fled across an international border due to war, violence, conflict or persecution.

That’s millions of mothers and fathers, daughters and sons, teachers, doctors and friends — each created in the image of God — with full lives and identities long before they became refugees. 

As we enter World Refugee Awareness Month and look toward World Refugee Day on June 20th, we’ve compiled a list of books, podcasts, videos and more to help answer your questions about refugees. As you engage with and share these resources, we hope you’ll be inspired to join us in creating a world where everyone can thrive. 


Blog: Was Jesus a Refugee?

Some advocates have described Jesus as a refugee. But was he really? World Relief CEO Myal Greene tackles that question and how the answer should shape the Christian response to refugees and other vulnerable immigrants.

Blog: Drivers of Mass Displacement

People are displaced from their homes for myriad reasons, including persecution, conflict, violence, human rights violations and climate-related factors. World Relief’s Lydia Dawson explains the drivers of mass displacement and how World Relief is responding globally. 

Blog: Worth the Wait: A Story of Faith, Perseverance and Love, Despite the Odds

For seven years, Congolese refugees (and newlyweds!) Mbimbi and Goreth didn’t know if they would ever see each other again. Read their story to learn more about the challenges and uncertainties that many refugees face as they rebuild.

Book: Inalienable: How Marginalized Kingdom Voices Can Help Save the American Church

U.S. churches are at a critical crossroads — blurred lines between discipleship and partisanship have compromised our witness and confused our national and individual responses to refugees and “the stranger.” In their book, pastor Eric Costanzo, missiologist Daniel Yang and World Relief’s Matthew Soerens find hope in the witness of global Christians, the poor and the ancient church.

Book: Beyond Welcome: Centering Immigrants in Our Christian Response to Immigration

Karen González invites Christians passionate about serving immigrants to explore how we can create welcoming communities that put our immigrant neighbors at the center of the conversation.

Book: Everything Sad is Untrue: (a true story)

Following his mother’s vocal embrace of Christianity, Daniel Nayeri, his mother and his sister were forced to flee Iran. In this memoir, he retells the tales of his family’s history from his perspective as a misfit middle schooler in Oklahoma. 

Book: The Girl Who Smiled Beads

When Clementine was six years old, she and her 15-year-old sister, Clair, fled the massacre that was happening in their home country of Rwanda. In this riveting memoir, Clementine tells their story of rebuilding and reclaiming life on their own terms.


Podcast: Life Across Borders

This World Relief mini-series offers a global and a biblical perspective on the subjects of immigration, mass displacement and refugee resettlement, diving into current policies and practices and sharing stories of our collective human experience.

Podcast: Resettled

This six-part series traces the U.S. refugee resettlement journey through the eyes of those directly experiencing it. Follow along as each episode brings the listener into the daily lives of refugees adjusting to life in the U.S. 

Podcast Episode: Holly Andrews on How the Church Can Walk Alongside Refugees

In episode 4 of our Forward Together podcast series, Holly Andrews explains how churches can use the resources they already have to help refugees and other immigrants rebuild their lives.


TEDx Talk: One Refugee’s Life Experience | Come Nzibarega

Born and raised in Burundi, Come Nzibarega shares his story of escaping torture and civil war and why he thinks refugee camps are the richest places in the world.

Video: Ibrahim’s Story

For Ibrahim’s family, the road to resettlement, reunion and rebuilding has been long. Learn more about the obstacles families like his can face as they seek safety.

Video: Who are Refugees and How Do They Arrive in the United States?

From flight and displacement to arrival and integration, this 7-minute animated video tells the true story of a refugee family’s experience in each stage of the refugee resettlement process. 


World Relief Workshop Course: Intro to Resettlement

Have you ever wondered what actually happens in the resettlement process or what a resettlement agency does? This FREE, 45-minute course will answer those questions and explain how you and your community can support refugees resettling in the U.S.

World Relief Workshop Course: Navigating Friendships

Navigating friendships with those who are different from us can be rewarding — and challenging! In this self-paced, online course you’ll learn essential skills for building empowering, long-lasting friendships with those who may differ from you in culture, socioeconomic status and religion, and best practices for supporting a friend who lives with trauma. During the month of June, enroll for 50% off with code WORLDREFUGEEDAY50.

Bible Study: Christ Like Welcome

Jesus astonished the culture around him by giving voice to the speechless, frustrating the powerful and humbling the wise. In this 5-week study from our partners at Women of Welcome, learn how your welcome can become like his — wonderfully surprising, deeply challenging and firmly rooted in love.

Bible Reading Plan: The I Was a Stranger Challenge

Take the challenge and discover God’s heart for those who have been displaced. Over the course of 40 days, read one Bible passage a day that speaks to God’s love for foreigners and refugees.


Children’s Book: Marisol’s Dress

In the midst of a revolution, young Marisol is forced to flee the life she knows and loves in vibrant Cuba. In this beautifully illustrated book, Emily Ozier follows her mother and grandmother as they journey to the U.S., facing challenges and celebrating along the way.

Children’s Book: My Two Blankets

When Cartwheel moves to a new country as a refugee, everything is strange: the animals, the plants, even the wind. An old blanket comforts her when she’s sad, and a new blanket just might change her world. A story about leaving home, arriving in a foreign land and finding a new friend.

Teaching About Refugees

For parents and teachers wondering how to talk about mass displacement with children and teens, the UN Refugee Agency offers teaching materials on refugees, asylum and migration, as well as guidance for teachers working with refugee children in the classroom. 

Are you ready to take the next step towards creating a more welcoming and just world for refugees and other vulnerable immigrants? Learn how you can join us today.

Karen Spencer is World Relief’s U.S. Marketing Partner and serves U.S. offices in the area of identity and messaging. She previously served as Mobilization Director for World Relief in Memphis, where she lives. She is a connector of people, places, passions and purpose.

Kelly Hill serves as a Content Writer at World Relief and previously served as Volunteer Services Manager at World Relief Triad in North Carolina. With a background in International and Intercultural Communication, she is passionate about the power of story to connect people of diverse experiences. 

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