Great Decisions: Refugees and Global Migration
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In Europe alone, approximately 10 million people were displaced by World War I. In 2017, an unprecedented 68.5 million people worldwide had been forced to leave their homes, including more than 25 million by war and violence. Join president and CEO of the Museum and Memorial, Matthew Naylor, for a timely panel conversation with Nazanin Ash of the International Rescue Committee and Abdul Bakar of Della Lamb as they address the roots, realities, and prospects of refugees and global migration.

When: Thursday, June 13
6:30-8 p.m. (Registration and cash bar/small plates at 6:00)
Where: J.C. Nichols Auditorium, WWI Museum and Memorial
2 Memorial Drive
Kansas City, Missouri  64108
United States
Contact: April Diaz
(816) 423-3632

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About the Event
Each year, groups of all ages and backgrounds around the country, including a number in the Kansas City area, consider critical international topics using the GreatDecisions materials provided by the Foreign Policy Association. The International Relations Council and National World War I Museum and Memorial are proud to present a program that will examine one of the 2019 topics – refugees and global migration.

Today, no countries have open borders. Every state in today’s global system has its own laws and policies about who is permitted to cross its borders, and how they will do so. Who determines whether someone is a refugee or a migrant? How have different countries, including the United States, reacted to migration? How effective are the international laws, policies and organizations that have evolved to assist and protect refugees and migrants? Our panel of experts will offer a range of perspectives on these topics and respond to audience questions, as well.

Registration with cash bar/small plates will begin at 6 p.m., with the program beginning at 6:30.

       6 p.m.         Registration and cash bar/small plates
       6:30 p.m.    Program begins
       8:00 p.m.    Program closes

Tickets And Registration
Admission is free to this public program, though reservations are requested to help with planning. Due to expected demand, early reservations are recommended. Reservations should be made on the World War I Museum's website

About the Panelists

Nazanin Ash Nazanin Ash is the Vice President of Global Policy and Advocacy at the International Rescue Committee. The International Rescue Committee is a global humanitarian aid organization that offers emergency aid and long-term assistance to people in crisis in over 40 countries and resettles refugees in 26 U.S. cities. Nazanin oversees the organization’s policy and advocacy efforts, which draw on the learning and experience of IRC humanitarian and resettlement
programming to shape policy and practice.



Abdul Bakar fled the civil war in his home country, Somalia, and immigrated to the United States as a refugee. Abdul is the director for the refugee resettlement program at Della Lamb Community Services, where he has worked since 2012. Earlier, since 2005, he was with Jewish Vocation Services helping to resettle refugees in the Kansas City area and find employment for them. He is passionate about this work and is beloved among the refugee communities in Kanas City. Their affection for him is not one felt for a service provider, rather it is the affection felt for a brother. In addition to working more than a full-time schedule assisting refugees, Abdul is studying toward an interdisciplinary Ph.D. (education and social science) at the University of Missouri–Kansas City. His research is a Narratological Inquiry into U.S.-African refugee youth’s educational experiences. Abdul joined the United Nations Association of Greater Kansas City in January 2006 and has served most of the years of his membership on the chapter’s board of directors. He was presented the Global Youth Advocate Award by the United Nations Association of the United States of America at a recent UNA annual meeting. His outstanding personal commitment to the refugee community in Kansas City was recognized by the Crescent Peace Society, which presented Abdul its Humanitarian Award.

Dr. Matthew Naylor (Moderator) is president and CEO of the internationally acclaimed National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, MO. Under Naylor’s leadership, the Museum has achieved unprecedented success, breaking records for attendance, educational/community event participants, website traffic and media impressions in each of his first five full years (2014-2018) as President and CEO. In that timeframe, attendance rose more than 60 percent in 2018 when compared to 2013. In July 2015, Matt was appointed Commissioner of the United States World War I Centennial Commission.

 Venue and Parking
The program will be held in the J.C. Nichols Auditorium of the World War I Museum & Memorial. Free parking is available in the circle driveway or in the lot to the south of the Memorial.




Sustaining Sponsors 



Supporting Sponsors
Kansas City Sister Cities Association
          KC for Refugees
          Midwest Center for Holocaust Education
          Zonta International KC II MO