Stories we read this summer

More than 50 million people are displaced around the world as of the summer of 2014, the highest number since the Second World War, according to the UN Refugee Agency.

Stories of people forced from their homes are stunning for their geographical breadth and, as in the Syrian civil war, the sheer number of those affected.

For some perspective: From Syria alone are 2.4 million refugees registered with the UN – roughly the size of Toronto (2.8 million). And the population of Canada, 35 million, is only equal to 70 per cent of the total number of displaced worldwide.

Here are some of the stories that we read this summer that turned these numbers into people:

A friend flees the horror of ISIS
George Packer for The New Yorker
August 6, 2014

Pride week: From visitor to refugee
Yvonne Zacharias for Vancouver Sun
July 25, 2014

Through lens, 4 boys dead by Gaza shore
Tyler Hicks for The New York Times
July 16, 2014

Fleeing gangs, children head to U.S. border
Frances Robles for The New York Times
July 9, 2014

Acid attack survivors don designs by fellow survivor in photo shoot
Lakshine Sathiyanathan for CBC
August 14, 2014

A Maple Syrup Mecca for Iran’s Gays
Nina Strochlic for The Daily Beast
August 10, 2014