Walking for Awareness: The Hike to Help Refugee Children

DUBUQUE, IA – With the refugee crisis still a problem around the world, many people are wondering how to best deal with the situation. Continuing with the United Nations Peace and Justice Week celebrated around colleges in Dubuque, people from many places came together to bring greater awareness of the refugee crisis.

Students and faculty from Loras College, the University of Dubuque, and Clark University walked in the Hike to Help Refugee Children on Saturday, September 24. The walk started at Christ the King Chapel on the Loras campus, and went to the University of Dubuque before ending on the Clarke campus. ud-image

People from the community walked in this event for a variety of reasons. The participants generally agreed that they walked to raise awareness of the problems still facing refugees every day.

jim-olson-imageAccording to Jim Olson, one of the coordinators of the hike, “…many of them [refugees], in fact most of them, are women and children, and, uh, the children in particular have very few educational opportunities. Only 25% of the refugees in Kenya that are school age are actually in school…” This is even more pressing in some of the large camps, where populations five times the size of Dubuque sometimes reside (Art Roche, another coordinator of the event).

The hikers managed to raise $220 from the entry fees that they paid. All of the funds raised will go to help refugees in problem situations, whether in the U.S. or abroad. This year, the specific focus was on Kenya, so funds will go to campus of Kenyan refugees. group-image

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Levi Bernhard is currently a senior student at Loras College. He originally hails from St. Benedict, a small town near Algona, Iowa. Levi is a reporter and crew member for LCTV News, and helps contribute stories to productions. A couple years ago, he worked as an intern at Kossuth Regional Health Center, recording and editing videos. This past January, he went on a travel January Term course to Greece, where he helped create a couple of short documentaries about the country. He enjoys being in media studies because he likes the concepts of telling stories to wide audiences, and working with a variety of technology. He is also in media studies because he has a dream of becoming a filmmaker.

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