Project HELP: Refugees

Refugee Women

Be kind and show love to others (see Lev. 19:33–34).

As we focus on refugees for our critical issue of Project HELP, how do we guide our preschoolers to understand about refugees? How do we explain about refugees without frightening preschoolers or causing misconceptions about refugees?

In explaining what it means to be a refugee, use words preschoolers understand. Tell preschoolers, “A refugee is someone who has to move to another country so they can be safe.” We do not need to frighten preschoolers or give information that is inappropriate for preschoolers about the reasons why refugees had to leave their country. Focus rather on the needs of refugees where they are now. We can tell preschoolers that many times refugees are not able to bring many things with them, so they need things such as clothes and food. They need a place for their family to live, and they need to know that God loves them.

Place your focus on ways missionaries help refugees. North American missionaries help refugees by helping teach language classes, providing food initially, helping refugees navigate our grocery stores, finding jobs, getting a driver’s license, filling out paperwork, finding permanent housing, enrolling their children in school, and becoming their friend. International missionaries do many of these same things, as well as helping refugees prepare for resettlement. Most importantly, missionaries tell refugees about Jesus and His love. Many refugees have never heard about Jesus, and missionaries and other helpers have the joy of sharing Jesus’ love with them.

Preschoolers can understand that others may be different from us in some ways, and the same as us in other ways. Others may speak a different language, have a different skin tone, or eat different foods. They are the same as us in that we all have families that we love, we all need friends who care, and we are all loved by God. Focus on ways preschoolers can be kind to others and help others. Use these Bible thoughts with preschoolers: Jesus said, “Love one another” (see John 15:17); and Help one another (see Gal. 5:13). Add this Bible thought to use along with the issue of refugees: Be kind and show love to others (see Lev. 19:33–34).

Throughout Project HELP: Refugees, suggestions will be made for Helping Others activities that may relate to refugees. Check with your local Baptist association or state WMU office for information about a ministry to refugees. If there are not refugee ministries in your immediate area, consider doing Helping Others activities for internationals in an English as a second language class or international students at a nearby college. Help your preschoolers know that God loves all people and we can share God’s love with others.

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