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Creator & Artist Stories

#MoreThanARefugee

By Danielle Tiedt

Chief Marketing Officer at YouTube

At YouTube, our mission is to give everyone a voice and show them the world -- particularly those who are underrepresented and whose voices and experiences are not always heard.

That’s why for World Refugee Day, YouTube Creators for Change – a global initiative supporting creators who tackle social issues and promote awareness, tolerance and empathy – has teamed up with the International Rescue Committee to create a new video series highlighting refugee voices from around the world. The IRC, which provides vital on-the-ground support to refugees in more than 40 countries and 28 U.S. cities, helped seven YouTube creators meet refugees in five different countries to help shine a light on their stories and to collaborate with them on videos depicting their unique experiences.

Over the past few weeks, Mama Bee from Eh Bee Family, Tyler Oakley, Jouelzy, Fly with Haifa, Francis Maxwell of The Young Turks, Suli Breaks, and Greg and Mitch from AsapSCIENCE traveled to Jordan, Serbia, Uganda, Greece and to cities in the U.S. to meet scientists, artists, mothers, and students who also happen to be refugees.

The stories they share go beyond the crisis coverage you see on the news and offer a look at the people behind the label--beautiful, courageous and fascinating people, each of whom is #MoreThanARefugee.



Each creator found they had much in common with the remarkable people they got to spend time with: Don and Suli are both artists; Mama Bee and Amira are both mothers who love their children fiercely; Catherine and Francis have always loved to play football to escape from everyday life; Haifa and Maryam are both dreamers who believe in the beauty of life. Our circumstances may be different, but our shared humanity is much greater than anything that sets us apart.

This humanitarian crisis has displaced tens of millions of people, and we hope these videos can help those of us who are not directly affected empathize with people experiencing life as a refugee. Parents and children, athletes and foodies, students and professors, businesspeople, artists and everything in between, these incredibly brave people have all been forced to flee their homes and endure tremendous challenges in search of safety.

If you want to stand with refugees, we stand with you. You’ll see donation cards for the IRC enabled on these videos, and over the next week, YouTube and Google.org will match your donation up to $500,000. The IRC provides humanitarian aid for people fleeing crisis and disaster, and more than 90 percent of all money donated to the IRC goes to programs and services that directly benefit refugees and displaced people.

Danielle Tiedt, Chief Marketing Officer, YouTube, recently watched the full series of #MoreThanARefugee stories.