Center for Interfaith Cooperation

Hoosiers of Many Faiths in Community

A report on 2018 World Refugee Day — Service and Celebration

June 20th more than a hundred volunteers came to Indy Urban Acres to celebrate World Refugee Day. The purpose? To grow food and community. Outdoor activities included – organic gardening, celebratory lunch, ‘Walk-a-Mile in Refugee Shoes’ simulation, and a community art activity.

Here’s what the Burmese American Community Institute (BACI) wrote about the day.

2018 marks the seventh year of the Burmese American Community Institute’s (BACI) partnership with the Indy Parks Foundation to observe World Refugee Day. Approximately 100 volunteers from BACI’s summer scholars and college prep programs, Indy’s Center of Interfaith Cooperation (CIC), and the Coalition of Our Immigrant Neighbors (COIN) engaged in a day of service and commemoration at the Indy Urban Acres Farm.

Our partners at CIC stated that “this annual event has grown to be an opportunity for communities and organizations in Indianapolis to participate in service and lift up a community engagement alongside our newest neighbors”. Indy Urban Acres harvests around 30,000 pounds of fresh produce annually, which it donates to local food pantries.

The volunteers at the event enjoyed Syrian cuisine home-made by local refugees and listened to the poster presentations of the BACI student. Through these posters, the students reflected upon the journey of refugees and shared what World Refugee Day means to them. The symbolism used by the students emphasized the importance of international cooperation and the U.S.’s global leadership role in providing refugee protection and giving new hope.

“This volunteer day is one way of giving back to the city and community that has given us so much and at the same time show our solidarity with refugees around the world who have courageously demonstrated resilience and perseverance through their difficult journey,” said Lian Sang, Programs Director at BACI.

Founded in 2011, BACI has assisted more than 5,000 refugees and newcomers with their U.S. integration through educational and immigration services. If you are interested to help refugees in our community succeed, please consider donating today!

This year’s celebration was organized by:

Burmese American Community Institute
Indy Urban Acres
Center for Interfaith Cooperation

Supported by:
Immigrant and Refugee Service Corps
Coalition for Our Immigrant Neighbors


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