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This Doctors Without Borders exhibit takes you on a journey into the life of a refugee


This Doctors Without Borders exhibit takes you on a journey into the life of a refugee

WATCH  | A Doctors Without Borders "Forced From Home" exhibit tells the story of the global refugee crisis through the experiences of those living it.

Your life, in 60 seconds

More than a dozen plastic cards hang in front of you, each representing an item that looks familiar to most people.

Some of these items (keys, money, cell phone, water, identification) are probably within arm's reach of you at all times. Some of the others might represent your most valuable possessions. 

In one minute, you have to decide which of these cards will come with you as you flee for your life.

A reality for thousands each day

The frantic 60 seconds where you have to decide what possessions to take is a reality for thousands of refugees every day.

In 2015, 24 people were displaced from their homes every minute due to war or persecution, according to the UN.    

After deciding which cards to take, exhibit attendees walk through stations that simulate the traditional journey of a refugee, from days of travel to border checkpoints to crowded camps. 

Lives are relatable

Authenticity is a critical theme of the Doctors Without Borders exhibit. The set-up of the tents, the medical supplies on display and the (ineffective) lifejackets all mirror common experiences in refugee camps. 

The MSF workers that guide guests through the exhibit have all worked in refugee camps, and they use their experiences to drive home the point that refugees came from lives that are relatable to anyone. 

Circa's snap story.

Stories not seen in the news

Before the tour begins, guests watch a 360 video projected inside a special tent that shows the stories of refugees and the challenges they face in a way you don't see on cable news.  

Outside the tents, the exhibit tells the stories of refugees through virtual reality.

After the tour concludes, guests can sit down and watch mini-VR documentaries produced by the international medical group (also called Médecins Sans Frontières).

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A typical set-up of a medical tent in a refugee camp.

Touring exhibit

The exhibit has already concluded stops in New York City and Washington, D.C. It's in Boston next, followed by visits to Pittsburgh and Philadelphia. 

To see when the exhibit will be in those cities, or to learn more about it, visit the Forced From Home website.  

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