The theme of Refugee Week 2013 is Our History and Heritage. To mark the theme this year we have commissioned a survey asking people from across the UK to tell us what in their opinion are the most significant contributions that refugees have made to the UK.
The report provides an overview of the survey findings and includes a few insightful responses by guest contributors. The one finding that has resonated most with us is that the huge majority of participants want our future generations to be better educated about Britain’s tradition in providing sanctuary and the benefits that this has brought to both refugee and host communities.
You will see that overall, Sigmund Freud was perceived to be the most popular refugee to make a significant contribution to British life. The Viennese psychoanalyst, who came to the UK in the late 1930s to escape Nazism, was voted as the nation’s favourite with half of respondents registering the father of psychology as their first preference.
We also loved that a vast majority (94%) believe that children should be taught the important role that the UK has played in protecting refugees throughout the centuries in schools. This clearly demonstrates that public opinion is overwhelmingly in favour of celebrating Britain’s tradition of welcome for generations to come.
You can read the full report here.
And don’t forget to check out our new online time-line, which we have launched to support this request for more to be done to raise awareness of refugee contributions and refugee movements to the UK throughout centuries.