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Refugee Sponsorship

August 19, 2016

Sault Ste. Marie & Area is well on its way to helping in the refugee crisis. Below is a list of all organizations (known to LIP currently) that are involved in sponsoring a refugee family. Donation methods are listed where available.

St. Andrew's United Church

Having been the first known group in Sault Ste. Marie which sought to sponsor a family, St. Andrew’s is currently working with a refugee family of six from Burma (Myanmar) who arrived in November 2015.

New Beginnings: An Interdenominational Refugee Sponsorship Group

In partnership with many other organizations, Zion Lutheran is hosting the process of sponsoring two refugee families from Syria. Their committee includes church members from St. Matthews Anglican Church, People’s Pentecostal Church, Free Methodist Church, Westminster Presbyterian Church, Our Lady of Great Council, Precious Blood Cathedral, Bethany Baptist Church, and St. Luke’s Cathedral, along with community members.

A New Beginning is accepting donations through cheques payable to Zion Lutheran's Refugee Fund, as well as online through canadahelps.org. Search ZionLutheranSSM to find their page and make sure to specify that your donations are for the Refugee Fund (a small administration fee will be charged if using canadahelps.org).

Zion Lutheran hours of operation are Tuesday and Thursday 9am-1pm and Wednesday 9am-3pm. Donation receipts will be given for everything over $20.00.

Willowgrove United Church

Beginning the sponsorship process in early November, Willowgrove has organized a sponsorship committee involving Willowgrove United, Emmanuel United, St. Joseph Island United, Central United, St. Andrew's United and other community members. They have raised their minimun funds goal and have received a Syrian Refugee famliy in early August, 2016. They are currently working with the family to get them settled in the city.

If you would like to donate to the group, cheques can be made out to Willowgrove Church Gifts and Memorials-Refugee Fund and delivered Monday-Friday, 9am-12pm and 1pm-4pm. For more information, please call: 705-254-5095.

St. Joseph's Island and North Channel Communities

Held a meeting on St. Joseph Island for the North Channel Communities at the end of the 2015. Recently, they have begun the sponsorship process as the communities involved have shown great support. They have requested a Syrian family and are awaiting confirmation.

Blind River

Began as a community sponsorship group in February 2016. With over 30 members, they have begun to fundraise and progress with sponsoring a refugee family. If you'd like to donate to the Blind River Sponsorship Group, please make all cheques payable to St. Saviour's Anglican Church-Refugee Fund.

Newcomers North

Newcomers North is a group of volunteers from three churches (Bethany Baptist, First Baptist and Faith Baptist) based in Sault Ste. Marie that are dedicated to welcoming and assisting refugee families. The group is currently working closely with New to The Sault at the Sault Community Career Centre to 'Adopt' a family of Syrian refugees who will be arriving in Sault Ste. Marie in late summer of 2016.

Their assistance will include providing the necessary items for setting up a household, helping with using the local transportation system, registering for school, and finding employment. Above all, Newcomers North will strive to build personal relationships with the family so that they feel comfortable and confident in their new hometown.

For more information or to donate to any of these groups, please contact:
Harleen Puaar
Outreach Worker
Local Immigration Partnership
705-759-5485
h.puaar@cityssm.on.ca



The Local Immigration Partnership has been working on a few things themselves...

1. Check out the commericial aired on CTV November 30th-December 11th:

http://review.bellmedia.ca/view/220467174

2. LIP is in the process of a capacity build which will inform city leaders about available services (housing, child care, education, etc.) required for refugees.

3. LIP is being updated regularly from the local MP and MPP offices in regards to advances in the refugee situation. Keep checking back for our most current information.

Another website has been developed in Sault Ste. Marie to specifically coordinate local efforts of sponsorship groups with interested community members. To visit, please go to:

Refugee705

The Federal Government is working on placing sponsored refugees across the country. Here is a recent map of where they are going:

http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/refugees/welcome/map.asp

If you would like more information on what the government is doing, check out the websites below:

Government of Canada:

#WelcomeRefugees

Milestones and Key Figures

Government of Ontario:

Syrian refugees: how you can help

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