Serving Refugees, Post #3: How We All Can Help

As a recap, I’ve posted twice now about World Relief and how we can serve incoming refugees. You can read those here and here. You can also visit the World Relief corporate site here to see if there is an active office in your area.

World Relief helps resettle refugees into cities across the US. These are families escaping their countries due to some type of awful persecution. They are looking for a safe place to raise their families and to earn a decent living. But it is a very hard situation. Generally they leave their countries with virtually nothing and come here to a new land, to a language they don’t know, and an entirely new culture. Some come from places where they’ve never had electricity or running water. They are basically expected to move here and assimilate quickly into a new life, find jobs not knowing the language, and make a decent living for themselves and their families.

This is where World Relief comes in. They help them get an apartment here, adjust to life, and find employment. But they are only able to give them $425 per person, one time only. A family of four comes and only gets $1700 one time and that goes to pay for their deposits, rent, utilities, everything. That money does not last long. How long would $1700 cover your family of four?

And here is where volunteer and donor support comes in. Here are some simple things you can do to help:

Continue reading

Serving Refugees, Post #2: A Baby Shower

This is my second post on World Relief and serving refugees. To read the first post click here.

After our group helped set up two apartments for arriving refugee families in May, Cason & I kept feeling tugged back to World Relief to do more. We both have a passion for the international community, and this finally seemed like the perfect place for us to be serving here in Nashville. We are involved in church and serving the church community (leading small groups, Cason is a deacon, etc), but it was way past time to start reaching out to those not in the church. So we went through the volunteer application process and helped with a few little things through the summer.

When fall rolled around, our church was doing another “Great Day of Service” and again our class signed up to help World Relief. It was going to be apartment set-ups again, until something changed at the last minute. With one week to go we changed courses completely and were led to host a baby shower for 5 pregnant refugee women (1 had actually just had their baby)!

Continue reading

Serving Refugees, Post #1

This is probably going to be the first in a series of posts on World Relief

Last Saturday, Cason & I attended a training, run by World Relief on how to help teach English to refugees. World Relief is an organization that helps resettle refugees into the area. These are individuals/families that are escaping their homelands generally due to persecution – political, religious, ethnic, etc – or wars/conflicts. Many have faced unspeakable terror. They are looking for a place that they can be safe and where they can raise their children without fear of being attacked.

It was during our church’s annual “Great Day of Service” last May that we discovered World Relief. I had started volunteering at Siloam medical clinic a few months prior to this. They are a group of doctors and nurses that give care to the uninsured and underinsured. I came to learn that most of their patients are refugees. Every Monday they would welcome dozens of refugees who had just arrived in the US within the last 7-10 days for the first check-ups & shots. I always wanted to take off work to be there on a Monday, but never did. Once I learned though about World Relief, the organization responsible for helping the refugees in all aspects, I was excited…

Continue reading