General Information About Refugees and NewcomersPresentation Transcript
“ The best way to find yourself, is to lose yourself in the service of others."
Who is a Refugee?
Someone found outside his/her home country who has a “well founded fear of persecution” because of his/her:
Race, religion, nationality, social group membership or political opinion
1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees.
Who is in Lansing?
Somali / Bantu Somali
Immigrants from all continents of the world
And many others. . .
In 2010 the RDC:
Offered services to 850+ people representing over 40 countries
Secured over 300 volunteers
*St Vincent Catholic Charities/Refugee Services 648 people resettled in FY 2010*
Coming To America
What children may face
Yet another move / life outside a refugee camp
School and language pressures
lost parents, hunger, violence, etc
Unexpected and unbalanced responsibilities within their families
Inverted power structure
Poverty in the “Land of Opportunity”
By surviving life threatening and dangerous war situations, children may have learned:*
1. The world is NOT a safe place 2. Parents and other adults cannot protect you 3. You cannot trust anyone 4. You are hopeless 5. You are powerless 6. Violence is a way to resolve conflicts 7. Others will respect you if they fear you 8. Death can happen at any time 9. Tomorrow may never come
* Center for Victims of Torture (www.cvt.org)
What is the Pathway Out?
It Takes a Community to Welcome Newcomers
Lansing School District
65 countries, 51 languages
Christ Lutheran Church & the Greater Lansing Faith Community
Donors, Funders & Friends
Doing Our Part:
History & Mission
What we Offer:
Drop in assistance
Opportunities to learn & make new friends
2011 Road Map
Youth Programming :
After school tutoring, youth groups, summer camp, support groups (Somali Girls & Ele’s Place, bullying, pen pals)
ESL, parent groups, drop In services etc.
Community Events: & Collaboration:
World Refugee Day
Community / State Initiatives
Greater Lansing Alliance Against Hate Crimes, RS Advisory Council, etc.