STORIES OF HOPE
STORIES OF HOPE
The goal of the International Welcome Center is to show and explain the love of Christ to refugees and immigrants while following the laws of the land to help them become legal citizens or maintain a legal immigrant status. The goal will be accomplished by providing the following services:
Wonderful things have happened in the first year of the IWC. Please read below and be encouraged. None of this could have been possible without your prayers and support.
Over the last year, the IWC delivered home goods to 41 refugee families reestablishing their lives in the Akron area. Home goods includes bed frames, sheets, microwaves, kitchen utensils, shower curtains, towels, couches, end tables, kitchen tables, chairs, and bedroom furniture. It is impossible to describe the smiles home goods bring to a family that has been sitting on the floor when they gather for a meal. They are amazed to discover what a shower curtain is, and a microwave always wows.
Refugee children are the most amazing people. Because of their young minds, they are many times the first in the family to learn English and speak it fluently. This makes them the de facto translator for many adult conversations. At the IWC, we sometimes get the privilege of reminding foreign born children that they are expected to play. Here are two boys who received donated bikes.
The IWC provided cooking classes. The class meets 5 or 6 times and it is in this environment friendships are made and language barriers are overcome. In November, the refugee moms in the class learned how to cook a Thanksgiving meal. The participants cooked a meal at our facility and then ate what they had prepared. Then, each one received all the ingredients needed to prepare the same meal at their home for their family.
Several IWC volunteers are helping refugees learn how to speak English. For a refugee to thrive and reach the full potential of life in America, they must learn English. It improves job placement, personal confidence, mobility, and general understanding. However, the greatest benefit of understanding and speaking good English is being able to avoid being taken advantage of by dishonest individuals. Every refugee smiles more when they feel understood and are able to understand.
I could go on, but if you’ve read this far you are probably beginning to wonder when this email is going to end. The important thing to remember: None of this could have been possible if Grace Bible Church had not answered God’s call to start the IWC.
Here are two things you can do:
Pray for the success of the IWC.
Pray for the IWC to gain influence among refugees and immigrants.
As 2020 unfolds, I will be sharing more with you. I promise. The emails will be much shorter.