Jesuit Universities Humanitarian Action Network (JUHAN)
2017 Student Leadership Conference – June 27-29, 2017
College of the Holy Cross – Worcester, MA
Theme: Principles in Crisis: Refugees and Responsibility
The Donelan Office of Community-Based Learning assisted in the planning and implementation of the 2017 Jesuit Universities Humanitarian Action Network (JUHAN) Conference at the College of the Holy Cross in June of 2017, along with the Dean's Office and Peace and Conflict Studies.
The conference theme, “Principles in Crisis,” references the moral and ethical frameworks, as well as guiding principles, that motivate and channel the global response to human suffering. Humanitarians, across faith traditions, espouse principles like the “humanitarian imperative,” whereby the international community provides assistance wherever it is needed. Simultaneously, the conference theme reminds us that we face dilemmas in the rush to assist; it compels us to consider the consequences of well-intentioned actions and to reflect on the practical meaning of compassionate deeds.
The conference focus topic, “Refugees and Responsibility,” highlights the needs of the displaced. Refugees lie at the heart of humanitarian response, as the conditions that foster displacement – conflict, famine, ecological disaster – signify acute social and political breakdown. Just as refugees are compelled to cross borders by conditions of vulnerability, so too are we morally compelled to respond to human suffering wherever it exists. And yet, with refugees at numbers unseen since World War II, media and political discourses reflect a fraying consensus on the rights of vulnerable populations. This conference surveys efforts, from Syria to South Sudan to Central America, to respond to mass displacement emergencies. It explores the tensions between political systems and humanitarian principles and reflects on our relationship with human suffering.
Navigate to the JUHAN Conference Website (which remains active post conference) to review the conference happenings and to view the conference keynote sessions. The JUHAN Conference Planning team is available for further conference inquiries. Contact JUHAN to learn more.
This conference was sponsored by the Dean's Office at the College of the Holy Cross and supported by the Donelan Office of Community-Based Learning (Holy Cross), Peace and Conflict Studies (Holy Cross), and the JUHAN network.