Global issues forum set in Kent
The forum at the main Street library will explore serious current global geo-political issues and concerns.
The topic will be "Refugees: Displaced, Stateless: Syria, Jordan, the U.S. and the World."
"Over one third of the 22 million population of Syria has been displace within the country or are now stateless, in camps in Jordan, Turkey, Lebanon and Iran," according to Baxer.
"The U.S. and other European countries have now agreed to help settle some of these refugees. Yet, this is only the tip of the iceberg. Most people in America don't realize -- there are over 43.7 million refugees and internally displaced people around the world and of those, the UN provides lifesaving assistance and protection to 34 million of them," he said.
"Imagine being the mother of a sick and hungry child and having to decide between risking your life staying in a conflict or leaving behind everything in search of safety. Millions of families have lost their homes to violence and war," Baxer related.
"The UN provides tents, shelter, supplies and life-saving services to refugees -- 80 percent are women and children. Millions of refugees need help all around the world -- one family torn apart by war is too many, one refugee without shelter is too many," Baxer said.
Leading the program will be Karina O'Meara, formerly of Kent, whose experience includes a stint as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Middle East, various international teaching assignments and collaboration with the Jordan Institute of Diplomacy.
These will include a former Russian diplomat to the UN, current or former teachers and professors as well as some students from local secondary schools.
Baxer is currently president of the United Nations Association of Connecticut and executive director of the Intercultural Institute of Connecticut.
He has been engaged in the work of sustaining cultural diversity and mediating cross-cultural conflicts for forty years in religious and academic institutions, teaching, counseling, and administration.
For more information and registration, call 860-927-3761.