13 photos show a heartwarming welcome waiting for refugees in Northern Ireland.

Northern Ireland is welcoming its new Syrian residents home with arms wide open.

The U.K. is accepting 20,000 Syrian refugees throughout the next five years as part of its Vulnerable Persons Relocation Scheme, as BBC News reported. And on Dec. 15, 2015, the very first group of 11 families (51 individuals) arrived in Belfast.

From the looks of it, the families received quite the warm welcome.


Because, as is the case when welcoming any new neighbors to your 'hood, there's a few things you should provide, like...

1. Welcome signage.

There's nothing better than a colorful sign to let you know you've finally arrived.

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

In this case, the sign was in the special welcome center in Belfast, where the families will be staying until they find more permanent homes.

2. Cozy sleeping quarters are vital too.

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

Pro tip: A splash of color on one wall can only help brighten someone's day. (And if anyone's day could use a little brightening, it's someone whose life has been uprooted by war.)

3. And cards. Cute greeting cards are mandatory.

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

These were made by local schoolchildren, excited to welcome and greet their new neighbors.

4. ... Seriously, you can never have too many cards.

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

5. Also, make sure the fridge is kept stocked.

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

These refugees lived in unstable, dangerous circumstances, waiting for some permanence and safety for months (sometimes, even years). They deserve a cold drink.

And make sure the clocks are ticking accurately, too.

6. And have holiday decorations on display.

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

I mean, even if you don't celebrate Christmas, I think anyone can appreciate a festive Christmas tree.

7. That includes this adorable Christmas angel.

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

Let's say it together: Awww.

8. Don't forget to have plenty of seating available.

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

(OK maybe a little more seating for the next round of guests.)

9. Especially couch seating with soft pillows. (Yes, please.)

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

For folks who've traveled thousands of miles to make it to the U.K., a comfy seat goes a long way.

10. And, of course, useful kits that cover the basics.

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

Emergency multilingual phrasebook? Check.

For families who've had everything stripped away from them, little things, like soap and toothbrushes — things many of us take for granted — are much appreciated.

11. And toys.

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

12. ... Lots and lots of toys.

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

13. Just like with cute greeting cards, you can never have too many toys.

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

After all, playing games and being creative may just help children find relief after they've seen the brutal effects of war.

What these families have been through is unimaginable. They need our help.

There are more than 4.3 million Syrian refugees who've been severely affected by conflict in their country according to the UNHCR. That's why — instead of banning Muslims from entering the U.S. out of fear, or building walls to keep immigrants out — we should be finding ways to aid those most affected by terrorism in the Middle East.

(By the way, if you want to help a refugee child in need, here's one way you can do it.)

I gotta hand it to those folks over in Belfast — they know how to be neighborly.

They must have taken a hint from Canada.

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images.

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In 1945, the world had just endured the bloodiest war in history. World leaders were determined to not repeat the mistakes of the past. They wanted to build a better future, one free from the "scourge of war" so they signed the UN Charter — creating a global organization of nations that could deter and repel aggressors, mediate conflicts and broker armistices, and ensure collective progress.

Over the following 75 years, the UN played an essential role in preventing, mitigating or resolving conflicts all over the world. It faced new challenges and new threats — including the spread of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, a Cold War and brutal civil wars, transnational terrorism and genocides. Today, the UN faces new tensions: shifting and more hostile geopolitics, digital weaponization, a global pandemic, and more.

This slideshow shows how the UN has worked to build peace and security around the world:

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Malians wait in line at a free clinic run by the UN Multidimensional Integrated Mission in Mali in 2014. Over their 75 year history, UN peacekeepers have deployed around the world in military and nonmilitary roles as they work towards human security and peace. Here's a look back at their history.

Photo credit: UN Photo/Marco Dormino

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