As many know, our church has sponsored two Syrian refugee families. It is our hope that one of them shall arrive by Christmas. We are fortunate that we are able to communicate with one family and all of us are learning to be patient.
In the meantime, we are helping other new refugee families resettling in Canada. They have been identified by the Thorncliffe Neighbourhood Office (TNO). Leaside United Church has been able to give them much-needed household items and furniture, generated by donations to our Awesome Sale. The Outreach Committee had approved a $500 “shopping budget” to purchase these things. As a result, the needed items are being shipped to two very grateful families in need. During the summer, this also happened. It is truly a Win-Win-Win situation!!!
Also, the Outreach Committee has approved a very special refugee support project. A refugee family of seven is being sponsored by a group of 5 Alberta families in Calgary. Both parents and children are attending school. They are steadily adjusting to life in Canada after spending 20 years in a refugee camp where their 5 children were born.
The family lives on a very basic monthly support.
Because they’re not Syrian refugees, the federal government does not pay their travel/medical fees of about $10 000. This loan weighs very heavily on the family. We hope that our fundraising shall reduce this burden.
In Alberta, living conditions are quite tough with huge job, money and morale issues. As a result, the following special project was approved by both the Outreach Committee and by the LUC Council.
It is noteworthy that:
1. a fund named the “Alberta Refugee Fund” is set up.
2. the Outreach Committee is contributing $1 000.
3. there people wishing to donate now the fund is set up.
4. it is hoped that at least $5000 could be raised by the deadline date of Monday, November 21st 2016. This is a very short time period so that it shall not interfere with the Annual Stewardship Campaign.
5. Cheques may be made out to “Leaside United Church” – Memo line: “Alberta Refugee Fund” and mailed / delivered to the church at 822 Millwood Rd., Toronto, ON M4G 1W4. All donors shall receive a tax receipt.
Our church has a wonderful legacy of refugee support and “helping those in need”.
Thank you for your consideration of supporting this special outreach project.
Bob and Lis Lister, Co-Chairs, LUC Community Refugee Resettlement Committee (LUCCRRC)