World Refugee Day 2019: 8 Celebs You Didn’t Know Were Refugees

BY Delara Zand / Jun 23 2019 / 21:11 PM

World-renowned singers, models and actors from Iman to Mila Kunis...

World Refugee Day 2019: 8 Celebs You Didn’t Know Were Refugees

On World Refugee Day this year, we think of the 71 million people forcibly displaced worldwide (per UNHCR). This figure is up 2.3 million from last year, and double that of 20 years ago. Of these 71 million people, 26 million are refugees. We also remember the outstanding and important contributions they've made to our world, shaping our societies and leaving enduring impressions on our communities. Many have even attained celebrity status - garnering fans, popularity and admiration to become the public figures we hear about day-to-day. Here are some famous faces you didn’t realise had beginnings as refugees...

1. Rita Ora

The Anywhere singer fled Kosovo with her family as a baby and came to the UK.

2. Mila Kunis

The Black Swan actress was seven years old when she fled Ukraine with her family for the US.

3. Halima Aden

The trailblazing model was born in a Kenyan refugee camp, after her mother made the journey from her homeland of Somalia. At age seven, she moved to the US. Last year, she returned to Kenya to visit the refugee camp in which she grew up. 

4. Freddie Mercury

Queen's lead vocalist fled Zanzibar with his family at age 18 and settled in the UK.

5. Iman

The supermodel and fashion icon fled her homeland of Somalia to study in Kenya, before eventually moving to New York to pursue her career. 

6. M.I.A.

At nine years old, the singer-rapper fled Sri Lanka with her family and moved to the UK.

7. Mika

The singer fled Beirut for London during Lebanon's civil war and has since returned to visit refugee camps in his homeland with UNHCR

8. Gloria Estefan

Following the Cuban Revolution, the award-winning singer fled Cuba as a toddler and settled in the US with her family.