Sophia Refugee Support Group (SRSG)
Sophia Refugee Support Group (SRSG) is a student-led volunteer group based in Sophia University founded in 2017.
The group was established from a research project called Refugee Voices Japan from Professor David H. Slater’s Digital Oral Narratives course at Sophia University. In the class, students conducted over 200-hours of interviews of refugee stories to relay on a website*. From those interviews, students recognized that refugees in Japan are not only invisibilized but are also commonly misrepresented despite their capabilities that could contribute to Japan. SRSG’s mission is to provide direct support to refugees in Japan and spread awareness of the situation to Japanese society. To do so, SRSG organizes events to gather students and refugees and create an environment where they can interact and learn from each other, visits the Shinagawa detention center to provide material as well as emotional support, delivers food packages in partnership with Second Harvest Japan, sends out personal hygiene packages, teaches Japanese necessary for daily living, translates and provides research for refugee application documents, and conducts fundraising events for their activities. SRSG also aims to spread awareness about the refugee issue by conducting workshops with organizations such as Amnesty International and Japan Association for Refugees and visiting high schools in Japan to present and generate discussions with students. SRSG strongly encourages students and the Japanese public to recognize, learn, support, and further spread awareness about reality of the refugee issue in Japan.
Refugee Voices Japan Website: https://refugeevoicesjapannet.wordpress.com/