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November 6, 2003
Issue 10 

Feature Article

Refugees 101

RESPECT International is very pleased to announce that we will soon be launching "Refugees 101", an e-Learning course designed to educate high school students on refugee and world hunger issues. We currently have 10 United Nations volunteers from all over the world building this interactive learning program.

The ten lessons in Refugees 101 provide summary content on refugees and refugee history, case studies, definitions, class activities and exams. Using enhanced graphics, video clips, newspaper articles and personal accounts, we hope to expand the scope of public understanding of refugee situations.

The course content will be delivered through CLI Virtuoso, an e-Learning tool provided by Cisco Learning Institute, for use at home and in classrooms. Right now our volunteers are gathering content and data and writing the lessons. We are working in collaboration with Teachers Without Borders, and have established a partnership with the UNHCR.

If you are interested in learning more about this project, contributing your time, or have any questions, please contact Jennifer Kemmeter at jkemmeter@idc.com. We look forward to hearing from you!

RESPECT e-Store Project

RESPECT is continually growing and, as a part of this process, the development of an e-Store is currently underway. Through selling ethnic products, the online shop will provide a channel to generate revenue for refugee communities and to help promote their financial autonomy.

The idea for the e-Store was conceived in the spring of this year through discussions in the RESPECT Forum. Upon consideration, it soon became apparent that the development and operation of an online shop would be no small matter. Though RESPECT has long had a presence online in the form of its web-site and maintains strong relationships with refugee communities worldwide, it was realized that more specific resources and knowledge would be required to create the e-Store. RESPECT therefore recruited a number of NetAid Volunteers to assist with the various tasks and the project began in earnest.

RESPECT opted for an off-the-shelf, open source e-Store solution and now has an a functioning development site containing a couple of vendors and a number of products. There remain important issues to be resolved, mostly revolving around pricing and payment. Also, information from potential refugee community vendors has only just begun to arrive but arrive it has!

We are nearly ready and have a pretty good idea about how to make the e-Store go 'live'. Hopefully, this will be within the next couple of months, depending primarily upon how rapidly potential sellers get back to us with product data. RESPECT has taken on an enormous challenge in the e-Store but thanks to RESPECT's commitment and the dedication and skills of its volunteers, the e-Store is well on track to helping promote self-sufficiency among needy refugee communities.

For more information, please contact Simon Dewerson at sdewerson@lineone.net.

Gallery

Here is our latest RESPECT country logo.
RESPECT India logo

Announcements

Computer Aid International

RESPECT is working to send some computers to a refugee community in Northern Uganda using Computer Aid International through our "Computers for Refugees" project. Source: Computer Aid International.

We are very excited to announce the addition of two more schools in United States as participants of RESPECT International: Dolphin Terrace Elementary School, Texas and Loggers Run Middle School, Florida.

Shannon Chancellor recently requested and was sent twelve letters from refugee students for an after school pen-pal club at Dolphin Terrace Elementary School in El Paso, Texas.

Maureen Marullo recently requested and received eighty letters for ESOL students. Maureen teaches at Loggers Run Middle School in Boca Raton, Florida.

Both schools were introduced to refugee students living in Northern Uganda. We were also very excited to include a beautifully designed and wonderfully informative RESPECT Handbook chock full of information and activities. Special thanks to Kae Sasaki, RESPECT Artistic Director, for her incredible work in creating this handbook.

Special thanks to Lorraine Fernandez in Mumbai, India who has coordinated the inclusion of the first two schools in India to participate in RESPECT International's Global Letter Exchange Project. The two schools are Convent of Jesus & Mary School and St. Thomas Academy.

RESPECT International is also proud to announce that we have received hundreds of letters from refugee students living in Sierra Leone and Northern Uganda. Many of these letters include photographs and artwork, and all of them are seeking penfriends from around the world! RESPECT thanks Alimamy Bangura and Alex P. Columbus of Sierra Leone for coordinating the collection and posting of these letters. RESPECT also thanks Tom Obonyo for his ongoing work in collecting and posting letters to us from Northern Uganda.

To request letters for your school, please submit an online form at: Online Registration Form.

As in any newsletter or magazine, RESPECT ezine is committed to striving for interesting articles and announcements concerning refugee issues all around the world. If you have any suggestions or would like to contribute an article, contact the ezine editor, Sumeera Rasul at editor@respectrefugees.org.