Our family's first involvement with refugees was in the mid 70s, a Vietnamese boat landed at the mouth of the Rejang River. The police presented Father with a letter written in Chinese.
The family was a Chan, and he addressed Father as cousin, claiming that they were the branch of the family who went to Vietnam. He heard that Father had become a big official, and asked if Father could sponsor his family to Sarawak.
Unfortunately, Malaysia's policy was to send the boat people away. Father was unable to help. He gave them some money. We never heard of them again.
When I came to New Zealand, through church, we befriended refugees from Vietnam and Cambodia.
Now I teach students, children and adults. I teach students from Somalia, Afghanistan, Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, the latest were 2 men from Tibet.
My life have been enriched through these connections.
As long as there are wars, there will be refugees.