SFU Refugee and Newcomer Programs

In 2016, in response to the global refugee crisis, SFU began a coordinated and multi-pronged approach to refugee-related issues. SFU engages refugee communities in a variety of ways including research, scholarships and support services for refugee students and community engagement. Over the past 3 years, we have partnered with over 30 local, national and international stakeholders and have engaged with over 2000 people in 30 community events.

Background Facts

The world has a population of 79.5 million forcibly displaced people worldwide at the end of 2019.

Among them are nearly 26 million refugees, around half of whom are under the age of 18.

The number of Canadian economic migrants, family reunifications and refugees will climb to 310,000 in 2018, 330,000 in 2019 and 340,000 in 2020. 

Just one percent of refugees (1%) attend post secondary education institution, compared to a global average of 34%.

The Goverment of Canada recently announced a commitment to accepting nearly 1 million immigrants over the next 3 years (2018-2020).

According to UN, Canada took in more refugees than any other country in 2018 (28,100 refugees).

Who is a Refugee?

According to the 1951 United Nations Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and Canada Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA), a refugee is:

Any person, who by reason of a "well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group, or political opinion

i) is outside the country of their nationality, and is unable or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail themselves or the protection of that country, or

ii) not having a country of nationality, is outside the country of their former habitual residence as a result of such events, is unable or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to return to that country."


SFU Takes Action