Marcy Franck

Refugee Advocate

It's easy to feel totally crushed under the weight of human suffering within the refugee crisis, and also as though there is no way you can help. At least that's how I felt at first.So I took advice from Mr. Rogers: "Look for the helpers. You will always find people helping." I started looking. And I started to feel better because I could see an entire movement of people devoted to making things easier for refugees—through aid, advocacy, and education. By learning about these initiatives, I was also able to see how I could help, too. Feeling empowered, even on a very small scale, is a powerful antidote to the crushing despair one can feel when being overwhelmed by all the suffering in the world. So now I promote the work of those who are helping refugees, and I do this for many reasons: First, it is much easier to engage with the crisis when you do it alongside other people who are making a positive difference—what the world needs is more people willing to engage. Second, I provide ways for you to feel empowered to help by lending your time, money, or voice to these issues. And, third, I do it as an important reminder that humanity is alive and well, and that there are more good guys than bad in the world. I need this reminder to stay positive and focused, and I suspect many other people to, too. To this end, I write stories about people who are helping. As I’ve learned more about how to make a difference, I have become an active independent volunteer. Sometimes I write about what I’ve learned as a result. During the day, I am the communications director for The Center for Health and the Global Environment at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. All opinions are my own.