The freshness of a new year causes many of us to reflect on our current situation and plan ways to improve ourselves and our circumstances. What better time to think of refugees than this season of contemplating personal life improvement? Refugees are starting fresh and find themselves in the midst of dramatic life change: a new language, new culture, new city, new climate, new foods. The list of “new” is very long.
When you contemplate giving up on that resolution you have made, consider what it would be like if giving up were not an option. Remember the individuals we are welcoming here to the Triangle for whom the possibility of giving up does not exist.
How can you help?
- Form a small group willing to commit to welcoming a specific refugee family arriving in the area.
- Volunteer to assist refugees with one time activities such as meeting them at the airport when they arrive, assisting them in applying for a social security number, and helping the children enroll in school.
- Watch for employment opportunities which would be a good fit for refugee arrivals.
- Call us when you begin spring cleaning with any donations that could be used to furnish the apartment of an arriving family, or when the transitions of life (young children outgrowing clothes and toys, sending older children off to college, etc.) cause you to find yourself with extra items on your hands.
In the meantime, may your new year be filled with many new opportunities and blessings, and may we all learn from the resolve and commitment demonstrated by the individuals arriving here in our community to begin life anew.