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Refugees and Internally Displaced People (IDP)

Refugees land on the beaches of Lesbos (Pablo Tosco/Oxfam) 

The world is experiencing a serious displacement crisis. By the end of 2015, there were over 65 million people displaced from their home due to conflict, violence and human rights violations. For most, the situations they are fleeing are themselves protracted crises offering no quick solutions. Hidden behind the statistics are the millions more who flee their homes but remain displaced within their own countries so do not cross a border. In fact, the over 40 million people are internally displaced persons (IDPs). Oxfam makes no distinction in the way we work with both refugees and internally displaced people, ensuring their needs are met and their rights to live in safety without violence or coercion are upheld.

People fleeing their homes may end up in camps, but more often seek shelter in host communities. These 'hosts' share their resources with homeless families, sometimes for years at a time, but are often invisible to aid efforts focused on those who have fled. Oxfam takes great care that the work we do benefits host communities too: improving their facilities; supporting their livelihoods; and maximising the potential to co-exist peacefully. We also call on richer countries to take in a fairer share of the world's refugees than most currently do, and thus ease the pressure on poorer countries which overwhelmingly host the highest numbers of refugees.

Shouldering the impact

Who really shoulders the bulk of responsibility for refugees and asylum seekers? The 6 biggest economies in the word host less than 9% of the world’s refugees and asylum seekers.

Reflections on the crisis

Maya Mailer, Head of Humanitarian Policy & Campaigns, reflects on the refugee crisis and outlines what Oxfam is doing, how we're campaigning and the importance of tackling the issue head on.