January 6, 2017

ECAR and Diya Abdo Honored with Award by Gulf South Summit

Every Campus a Refuge (ECAR) and Guilford College’s Diya Abdo, its founder, will be honored with the 2017 Outstanding Service-Learning Collaboration in Higher Education Award by the Gulf South Summit, an organization promoting service learning and civic engagement.

The award will be presented at the group’s annual conference March 22-24 at UNC Greensboro. According to the organizers, Diya and the ECAR initiative were nominated for the award by multiple colleagues and former students, “citing your tireless commitment to refugee communities around the country.”

In 2015, Diya, an associate professor of English, founded ECAR as an initiative of the Center for Principled Problem Solving at Guilford. ECAR calls on colleges and universities around the world to host refugees on their campus grounds and to assist them in resettlement. The movement has spread from Guilford to other U.S. campuses.

The College has thus far hosted two Syrian families and a Ugandan man (11 refugees in all) in campus houses and apartments. After leaving ECAR, they have all settled in Greensboro, their children attend school here, and the parents are working.

“We’re so happy that Every Campus a Refuge has been recognized in this way,” Diya says. “All the thanks go to the folks who have made ECAR possible and who support it and do its tireless work, including the generous friends who have donated their time, money and energy to helping us host refugees and assisting in their resettlement.

“Special thanks are in order for our president, Jane Fernandes, the Center for Principled Problem Solving, our amazing faculty, staff, student, alumni and community member ECAR volunteers, our community partner, Deep Roots Market and our partnering refugee resettlement agency, CWS Greensboro.”

The Gulf-South Summit was established in 2001 by several Southern universities. It has become one of the foremost annual conferences on service-learning, drawing faculty members, students and service professionals from all over the U.S. to network with colleagues and meet leading authorities on civic engagement.

Support ECAR by donating online and designating “Every Campus a Refuge” in the “Other” category.