“I can do things you cannot do, you can do things I cannot; together we can do great things.” Mother Teresa
Donations on our web-based Chuffed page and donations through First United Church have now reached over $19,000, which is nearly half way towards our goal of $40,000! Thank you to everyone who has already donated! Please help to spread the word so that our goal can be reached.
Refugee Sponsorship is our opportunity to draw the circle wide, even wider still, as the hymn goes, and to assist people who have been displaced, having had to flee their home country to escape war, persecution, or a natural disaster. The UNHCR estimates an astounding 80 million people were displaced worldwide in the year 2020. The need is great, staggering, in fact! And – we can play a part in action-based solutions when we support Refugee Sponsorship. The sponsorship process is so vitally important to offer supported time and opportunities for settlement, acclimation to a new language, culture, and life, and so much more!
Our church previously sponsored a family from Syria and is now in the process of sponsorship again. The unsafe and difficult living conditions still exist in Syria and affect many. In an effort to help those still in need of sponsorship and also for family reunification, we are now sponsoring family members of our dear Syrian friends, who recently became official Canadian citizens, 4 years post sponsorship. Being forced to flee one’s homeland – leaving everyone and everything, including your known language, culture, and way of life in exchange for safety, is something I personally cannot imagine living through. The thought of perhaps never seeing my family ever again is devastating. The importance of this family reunification cannot be overstated, not only for the family of refugees that we will be sponsoring but also for their relatives that now reside here in Canada. Caring loving friends are a blessing and very necessary in beginning again, but nothing compares to family members with shared experiences, cultural and religious backgrounds, and the bond of having grown up together.
I, Amy Popick, am returning as Chair and can safely speak for our first working group in saying that being a part of the final chapter of our refugee family’s journey through sponsorship was beyond anything we could have imagined. Witnessing and walking alongside our friends the Etmehs as they built a new life, learned a new language and customs – watching the dedication, resilience, strength and so much more – is without a doubt one of the richest and most impactful experiences I have had. We are excited to be in the process of this next sponsorship and to support family reunification as we do! Our other working group members are Marie Andrews, Heba Anouz, Janet Keene, Anika Henderson, Faris Sadden, Annette Taylor, Linda Stumpf, Marilyn Durant, Catherine Christie, and Maxine Olmsted.
We have multiple ways for folks to add their support through donations; please note all donations are tax deductible.
- Electronic Funds Transfer – simply direct your etransfer to firstname.lastname@example.org and add Refugee Sponsorship in the memo section.
- By cheque, made out to First United Church, Refugee Sponsorship in the memo section. Mailing address: 223 3rd Ave NE, Swift Current, SK, S9H 2G8
- Our Chuffed fundraising page: https://chuffed.org/project/refugee-sponsorship-and-family-reunification
- Automatic Bank Transfer – Preauthorized Remittance or PAR is a direct debit program that allows you to support sponsorship through an automatic monthly withdrawal from your bank account for the duration of our fundraising
Members of our new Refugee Sponsorship Working Group tell us why they want to help bring this family together: