Shambel Zeru in Washington, D.C., in September 2016.

(UNCHR/Arielle Moncure)

President Barack Obama announced recently that he wants the country to admit nearly 60 percent more refugees in the next year. Meanwhile, several dozen Republicans in Congress have asked their leadership to block funding that would allow refugees from Syria, the Middle East, and North Africa to enter the U.S. Amidst the political debate, a Denver high school student traveled to Washington, D.C., last week to advocate for more resources to help refugees in the U.S.

Shambel Zeru fled violence in his home country of Eritrea, lived in a refugee camp in Ethiopia and is now a senior at South High School. Zeru's trip to Washington was part of the Refugee Congress, which included one refugee from each state. Zeru shared his story with Colorado Matters host Nathan Heffel.