The Philippines has been continuously lauded by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) for its consistency in promoting international solidarity through the acceptance of refugees and asylum seekers, despite its economic and social instability. This paper intends to discuss the efforts of the Philippines in its adherence to its international commitment to protect the fundamental human rights of refugees and asylum seekers as one of the signatories of the 1951 Convention on the Status of Refugees and the 1967 Protocol. While the Philippines has proven its willingness to accept these communities for temporary shelter, the country lacks policies covering rehabilitative programs for refugees and asylum seekers, this research recommends a creation of a comprehensive policy that would cover aid in the restoration to cultural normalcy of these communities, through the participation of young refugees. The problematic refugee situation may incur cultural trauma and eventual loss of previously recognised customs and norms of the communities as they enter a new territory as temporary sanctuary from persecution. While the experience of cross-cultural environment for children or young refugees is a general concern during the process of seeking refuge, youth resilience is a distinguished factor in rehabilitating community life to normalcy. This paper recommends the creation of an extensive policy in the Philippines, not only covering the acceptance of refugees and asylum seekers, and processing of application to the refugee status, but also extending support to rehabilitative programs with youth participation.
Aimee Francesca Terrenal, De La Salle University, The Philippines
Stream: Anthropology, Archaeology, Cultural Studies and Humanities
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