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The Refugee Team, which is chaired by John Whitmore of Hillsborough, is looking for donations of goods and money, which can be given to any of the churches, to be passed along to the Refugee Team. The churches will issue appropriate receipts. The actual work will be coordinated through six subcommittees as follows:
Accommodation: finding out what is available for accommodation in our area (with attention paid to schools, transport, shopping, other services and the social contacts that we need to maintain), and also checking out what may be available in Moncton, preferably not far out of downtown (for access to MAGMA, other Syrians, schools, etc.)
Furnishings: identifying the actual needs and the best sources. We can arrange some storage space, if necessary in a storage locker, but we don’t necessarily want everything now, just to be available until we have a definite date of arrival.
Medical: in which ways will we need assistance, and how do we help in the times of need?
Education: Adult: language and other skills. Children: what level of schooling do they have? How do we help them overcome a 5-year gap in schooling?
Documentation: SIN (they will be permanent residents the day they arrive), Medicare, driver’s licence, school acceptance, all sorts of governmental and other formal stuff
Social: Getting to the point of being accepted as friends, cooking (both groups have a lot to learn from each other!), touring, shopping trips, entertainments, helping to mix into the community... and, of course, transport as needed.
To join a subcommittee or for more information about the Albert County Refugee Team, email John Whitmore at firstname.lastname@example.org
For details on the refugee crisis and Canada’s reaction, see the links below.
· SYRIA - Syria’s complex and cruel civil war has been compounded by the Islamic State (ISIS) and 4 million people have left their nation. Millions more are displaced internally.
· LEBANON - 1.3 million Syrian refugees, 300,000 Palestinian and 100,000 Iraqi refugees. 25% of Lebanon’s population are now refugees. The situation is tense and untenable.
· CANADA - The UN has called on developed countries to alleviate this strain. Canada has pledged to receive 3,000 Iraqi and 10,000 Syrian refugees over the next one and three years respectively.