UNICEF at the Global Refugee Forum 2023

Over 2 million children were born as refugees since the last Global Refugee Forum.

11 December 2023
South Sudanese refugees

WHEN: 13 - 15 to December

WHERE: Palexpo, Geneva, Switzerland.

WHY: The 2023 GRF is centered around the theme of inclusion of refugees into national systems. As the world grapples with unprecedented levels of displacement, this year's Global Refugee Forum (GRF) stands at a critical juncture, with a profound impact on the lives of millions of children globally. Children, over-represented among the world’s refugees, face unparalleled challenges. With over 2 million children born as refugees since the last GRF, and a staggering 43.3 million children living in forced displacement by the end of 2022, urgent action is needed.

WHO: List of spokespersons available for interview:

  • Ted Chaiban, UNICEF Deputy Executive Director - Humanitarian Action and Supply Operations
  • Verena Knaus, UNICEF Global Chief, Migration and Displacement

WHAT: In the previous GRF, 80 per cent of pledges overlooked children, or focused almost exclusively on education, without considering other elements of support refugee children need. The 2023 GRF must rectify this oversight, delivering tangible outcomes for children. UNICEF has been actively engaged in promoting key multistakeholder pledges for children at the 2023 GRF.

UNICEF is organizing high-level events on Child Rights, Education, Healthcare, Economic Inclusion, Social Protection, Ending Statelessness, as well as events on Ending Child Immigration Detention and Youth Participation. These events, conducted in collaboration with youth partners, aim to garner global support for child-focused pledges that can positively impact the lives of refugee and host community children.

UNICEF’s key asks: To ensure refugee children and families are included, protected and empowered, we need to:

  1. Reimagine collaboration for sustainable change
  2. Include refugee children in national systems and services
  3. Ensure children's access to international protection
  4. Meaningfully engage and empower refugee and host community children and young people


Media contacts

Tess Ingram
Tel: +1 934 867 7867


UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. Across more than 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, to build a better world for everyone.

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