PORTLAND, Ore., April 14, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Imagine moving a family of 10 from a spacious suburban home to a drafty, single-room cow shed with dirt floors. This is reality for millions of people around the world. A new experiential exhibit at the Mercy Corps Action Centeroffers a multi-dimensional and highly personal view into the daily life of the millions of people forcibly displaced from their homes and the ways in which Mercy Corps connects them to the resources they need to survive and recover from crisis.
"Today, more people are displaced from their homes than at any other time since World War II. We want the Portland community to understand the challenges faced by the millions of refugees around the world and learn how, with your support, Mercy Corps is helping families survive and rebuild their lives," says Neal Keny-Guyer, Chief Executive Officer of Mercy Corps. "Beyond Survival aims to offer you a moving, profoundly human and at times hopeful glimpse into this global challenge."
As they explore the exhibit, visitors listen to the sounds of Za'atari refugee camp in Jordan, the second largest refugee camp in the world and home to more than 80,000 people who have fled the conflict in Syria. These sounds are the backdrop to models of the structures integral to life as a refugee—water sources, cow sheds and refugee camp playgrounds and tents. Photo and video displays introduce visitors to the people living in camps today.
"A sobering global story is unfolding," says Keny-Guyer. "It is a tale of weak global governance and the limitations of institutions to solve big problems – and how more than 51 million people – of whom more than half are children – are enduring unimaginable hardship as a consequence."
Beyond Survival: Life as a Refugee was funded by the generosity of the Gray Family Foundation, and will be open through the end of September. The Action Center is Mercy Corps' hub for community engagement to explore global issues through a variety of public programs including youth workshops, lectures, films and exhibits. It is open to the public Monday to Friday from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Learn more at mercycorps.org/action-center.
About Mercy Corps Mercy Corps is a leading global humanitarian agency saving and improving lives in the world's toughest places.