As you know I am here to encourage everyone to give to Help Refugees. I think the plight of refugees is one of the most misunderstood issues in the world today. When I hear about countries closing their borders instead of opening their arms sometimes I wonder what's happening to humanity.
By 2050 we expect to have one billion displaced people in the world. These people are running away. An estimated 11 million Syrians have fled their homes since the outbreak of the civil war in March 2011, what happened in Afrin just a few days ago is a scandal and human tragedy, at the same time people from the horn of Africa are running to take their families away from brutal civil wars.
The people we are talking about are fleeing war and conflict. We must be less afraid to be honest about the fact that the West is contributing to this conflict, to the extent of selling arms to the countries perpetrating the atrocities like Yemen and Turkey. We should all request from our governments to stop the arms sale immediately, from United Kingdom to Spain. The United Kingdom is not only Spain's biggest investment destination and the country that provides it with the largest number of tourists; it is also the main customer of the Spanish defense industry. Both United Kingdom and Spain sell tens of millions worth arms to Saudi Arabia, which is responsible for the war in Yemen. But as we can see, our Western governments are also complicit.
The disproportion between where the wealth lies in the world is only growing, we are so lucky, we must use the privilege we were born into to help others in whatever ways we can. At a time when world leaders should be coming up with the solutions we have a responsibility to help our fellow humans. And we are all the same. Refugees could be our children, our mothers, our sisters or brothers. We ourselves could be refugees already tomorrow.
That's why I'm here tonight with Help Refugees. Help Refugees began by going to Calais, to the so called, Jungle Camp, because nobody, neither governments nor aid organisations were helping. I volunteered with them and saw with my own eyes the vital work they are doing there, improving people's lives in many ways, making it bearable. Just two and a half years later they have helped over three quarters of a million people and they work in 10 countries in Europe and the Middle East. They fund emergency medical care in Syria, thousands of diapers per month in Greece, fresh fruit and vegetables to fight malnutrition and much much more. In addition to providing for people's basic needs Help Refugees also advocate for long-term change, recognising that changes in attitudes and policy are equally important in order for us to move forward, together.
Climate change is only going to make the refugee crisis worse and one of the ways You can combat this is to strive towards being vegan. Refugees, conflict and climate are all profoundly connected to one another. ´Choose Love' is Help Refugees slogan. Let's choose love for our families, for our fellow humans, for animals, for our planet. Choosing love is activism.
If you can support Help Refugees I really urge you to. There is much much more that they can do and many more lives they can save with yours and their help.