The first meeting of the subcommittee looking for housing for our Syrian friends confirmed what we expected: finding both temporary and permanent housing for our group of seven would be a significant challenge.

    As an expression of the mission and vision of our church Hope Without Borders is sponsoring twelve people from Syrian / Palestinian descent to Canada as they seek to escape the destructive civil war.  Included in this group is a grandmother who is guardian of two of her grandchildren and her daughter with three children. The parents of the two children and the father of the three children either died or have gone missing. The grandmother, her daughter and five children very much want and need to stay together.

Temporary housing is required for the first month or two after arrival as we then search for more permanent housing. Calls and prayers for temporary housing for the group of seven went out.

A sponsorship group in Bowmanville approached Rehoboth CRC about the temporary use of the church’s home located next door to the church for when their sponsored group would arrive. Knowing that we were further along in the application process led me to ask Pastor John Wildeboer about the possibility of our using the home as temporary housing for our group of seven. John moved the request forward to the youth leaders, their Building and Grounds people and church leadership.

Our request was graciously accepted! This beautiful four bedroom home is available to us as temporary housing. Youth leaders Kim and Matt Zantingh were more than willing to move the youth activities into the church building on a temporary basis. The plight of those who suffer is close to their hearts. The Christlike spirit in which this has all happened has truly been amazing and very encouraging. Prayers have been answered through the wonderful extension of community from those in our sister church. Thanks be to God!

Stay tuned for further developments for our Syrian friends as we trust that God will continue to provide for present and future needs.

 

Fred  

 The Steering Committee has an immediate need for temporary (one month, possibly a few weeks longer) housing for a group of 7 individuals (two women and 5 children) as they are expected to arrive very soon! one month. If you know of any housing, please contact the office.

The Steering Committee is putting on a Safe Church Training session on June 9, 7:00-9:00 PM. The session will present an­ overview and expectations of Safe Church policy. The session is open to the whole congregation.

Finally, the Steering Committee has been able to secure some storage space at Knox Christian School and will schedule a three hour window on a Saturday in early June when people can drop off household goods that have been collected. We'll post a list of the required items in the near future.

Hope Fellowship Refugee Committee: Name & Logo

The committee is seeking submissions for a name and/or logo for its refugee sponsorship ministry. We envision that this ministry will go beyond the current initiative into the future.  We think that having a name and logo should eflect that vision. It could be used for a website, Facebook page and both internal and external communications. The name and logo should be designed with a view to respect the dignity and welcoming of refugees. Our preference is that it does not have the word “refugee” in the logo or name as once they arrive, they are no longer refugees.

We invite you :

  1. To submit a name which reflects our mission to welcome and support refugees to Canada. You could submit a ame alone, or
  2. Submit a name with a design/logo.  This could be a combined effort, perhaps the result of a brainstorming session with your small group or ministry group. If you use images from elsewhere you should respect copyright and licensing guidelines.To volunteer to develop a design or logo after a name is selected.

 

Submissionshould be made to the committee at hope.refugee.sponsorship@gmail.com,

Housing Needs
This item is repeated from the last updateas it is the need that is the most urgent and perhaps the most difficult to overcome, that is finding affordable housing for the refugee families. The family group of ten whom we are directly sponsoring need to be housed in two groups:
Family 1:
A cousin, his wife and their two-year-old child. This family could be well suited to an apartment and there is considerable flexibility as to where the apartment might be situated, including Clarington or Oshawa.  

Family 2:
A grandmother who is the guardian of two grandchildren, as well as her daughter who is the mother of three children. This constitutes a family group of two adults and five children. This family group has limited ability to speak English, and would be best served living closer to their relative, Jordan, who resides in North Whitby, although housing in NW Oshawa or in Clarington would also be great.
Housing could be provided either on a short term (two or three month) or full year basis. As we continue through the application process we consider the month of May as the earliest time of arrival in Canada. However, we don’t really know so we must be prepared if things proceed quicker or slower than expected. If you are aware of properties that could be considered on either a short term or full year basis, please contact the office.


In addition, there is ongoing work being done to construct a number of sub-committees in order to carry out the myriad of tasks that need to be accomplished before and after the refugee family members arrive. If you have been contacted, please prayerfully consider taking up the tasks to which you have been invited. If you have not been contacted but would like to volunteer your time and energy, please contact the Steering Committee at: hope.refugee.sponsorship@gmail.com

 

 

We also solicit ongoing prayers from all for the expeditious completion of the application and clearing processes.

 Our first meeting was held on Tuesday, Dec. 1  and it was exciting.

It's not too late to get involved.  If you would like to be part of the process, please fill out this survey:   

http://goo.gl/forms/A7RJNIIcHU.

Here is a report from the meeting: 

Refugee Sponsorship Update

Fabulous!, Beyond Expectation! - those words describe the spirit and enthusiasm of the approximately seventy five members of Hope Fellowship who, along with guests from some local churches and community groups, attended the Refugee Sponsorship Information Meeting Dec 1.  A few highlights:

  • Pastor Peter outlining the scriptural vision for refugee sponsorship and sharing a story of his previous experience with refugee sponsorship.
  • Pastor Peter shared that the Vision Leadership Board was enthusiastically committed to this project setting $70,000 as the target amount for our church to commit in support of this endeavor with the sponsorship of two families suggested as our present goal.
  • An excellent and informative presentation on refugee sponsorship made by Pam DeWilde. Pam also works for our denomination as a facilitator for refugee sponsorship.
  • A flood of ideas to further the project and a great deal of willingness expressed to get involved and serve was shared by participants.
  • Excitement for the exploration of working together with other sponsoring groups.

Next Steps:

  1. Launching a Steering Committee.   Our denominational resources recommend a committee of eight to ten people.  In addition to those who have expressed interest in serving, you are asked to come to our first meeting scheduled for THURSDAY DECEMBER 17th at 7:30 at our church.  
  2. Included with the church newsletter next week will be a one page summary document providing summary information from the Info Meeting. 
  3. If you haven't yet had an opportunity to fill out the online questionnaire please take few minutes to do so.  Also, please find a place on the questionnaire to include your email address.  

Questions?  Suggestions?  

Please feel free to contact the church office for more information


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