From Refugee to Peacebuilder: Interview with Foni Joyce

Displaced children at a United Nations camp. Juba, South Sudan, August 12, 2016. (Isaac Billy/UN Photo)

Refugee Foni Joyce recalls an experience of “literally running for your life,” as she and her family fled on foot to Kenya from war-torn South Sudan [then part of Sudan] in 1991.

Ms. Joyce has used her experiences to advocate for the rights of refugees and better outcomes from events such as the recent United Nations high-level summit on refugees and migrants.

“I hope to see more opportunities for young people. More opportunities for them to voice their ideas. More opportunities for them to take leadership roles and skills. Because if they’re given that opportunity they become leaders,” she said of her role in the UN’s Global Refugee Youth Consultations.

Ms. Joyce spoke with the International Peace Institute’s Hillary Saviello ahead of the September 19 UN summit, as part of a Global Observatory interview series on international migration and the refugee crisis.

Other interviews in this series: 

Pierre Krähenbühl, Commissioner-General of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees.

Peter Maurer, President of the International Committee of the Red Cross.