Supporting refugees has never been as important as it is today. Worldwide, more than 65 million people have fled their homes escaping from conflict or persecution. Raptim spoke to Tineke Ceelen of Stichting Vluchteling, who has made it her life’s mission to help the most vulnerable people in remote locations. “My whole life revolves around compassion.”Stichting Vluchteling gives refugees a voiceSince 2003, Ceelen has been the director of Stichting Vluchteling (Refugee Foundation), an emergency aid organization providing support to refugees across the planet. When there is an emergency, Stichting Vluchteling arranges shelter, medical care, food and clean drinking water. They have been helping refugees for over six decades.“Every human life is worth to be saved,” Ceelen says. “That is why I do what I do and why we take risks. You don’t save a life just between office hours. If it needs to be saved at 3 AM, you save it regardless, and you do that out of compassion. Compassion adds value and sense of direction to your life. When you lose that compass, you end up in a sad situation.”Ever since the refugee crisis escalated in the last years, there is plenty of cynicism among European citizens towards refugees and the humanitarian organizations helping them. To combat those sceptic sentiments, Stichting Vluchteling explains the story of refugees. “It is important to show what we do and how we work as an organization.”“Refugees can’t share their stories themselves, so we give them a voice and tell their stories. Because we are heard, and we have the infrastructure, we are capable of providing aid. You cannot control where you are born; that is a matter of luck, and the way you should approach the refugee issue,” Ceelen explains.