Houston resettles more refugees than any other city in the United States, contributing to the fact that we are also the most diverse city in our nation. As a refugee comes into our city, we would love for the Church to be the first responders. There are great organizations in the city that work diligently to help resettle families, but their funding and bandwidth runs short and we need more individuals and families to step in and provide assistance. There are multiple ways to get involved and at different levels.
Many have asked about how to specifically reach out to Syrians in Houston. It is confirmed that about 80 Syrian families are here and more coming down the pipeline. Resettlement organizations are working hard to provide the structure and systems for the thousands that will be arriving in the next couple of years. Bayou City Fellowship is in talks with these agencies for finding on-going ways to mobilize our people into receiving Syrians and what we can do to make sure they have the best acculturation experience. Until then, there are lots of HUGE needs currently to help refugees from other countries (that have the same flight and crisis as many of our Syrians) to get acclimated to life in America.
For more information regarding these needs, please fill at the form found at the bottom of this page. Please contact Alicia Divers if you have any additional questions regarding refugee needs.
Welcome Kits – Bayou City Fellowship will be hosting a drive to collect items in the month of October. We are in contact with organizations to find out the greatest needs first and then will compile a list of needs to give to each campus. So keep your eye open for more details on Sundays and in our online weekly newsletter of start and end dates and drop-off locations. If you are interested in providing assistance outside of Bayou City then you can view Interfaith Ministries Refugee Wish List and organize through their organization.
Host a Family – Refugee Services of Texas is looking for individuals to mentor families. This is a 3-month commitment and the basic tasks include being a friend, teacher, and advocate for them. Here is a link of the job description and requirements. This would be great opportunity for our community groups to respond together.
Job Placement – We need people with a passion to help refugees with resumes, interview process, or are great at helping or assisting refugees to find jobs. This is one of the LARGEST and most challenging needs among our refugees. You can be an employer, recruitment agency, or just an individual with patience and willing to persevere with families until they find jobs.
ESL – One of the greatest needs for refugees is learning English. We are looking for teachers, in-home tutors, and class room tutors.
Webinar – On Thursday, November 12th at 7 p.m.Central Time, Samira Izadi Page, Executive Dirctor of Gateway of Grace Refugee Ministries, will shed light on the struggles faced by those fleeing their home countries to take refuge in the United States. The discussion focuses on teaching participants to:
- Understand aspects of the emotional process inside refugee families and communities.
- Identify emotional and spiritual problems within these systems.
- Implement Christ-centered ways to help refugees resolve their emotional problems.
All you will need is a computer or tablet with ear buds or a head set. The day before the webinar you will be sent an invitation via email to join the webinar. Please consider being a part of this important training event! Click here to register.
Give to those working with refugees daily – There are two great organizations within the family of Bayou City that we would love for you to consider giving that are Kingdom Minded people that will love and receive refugees with the love of Jesus.
- Urban Catalys t– They support people on the ground that are with refugees that have already been resettled but still have huge needs to help acculturate into American culture such as English class, job placement, and meeting financial needs. We love and support this organization and they work they do among refugees. You can learn more about them on their website and how they are specifically stepping into the Syrian Crisis. http://ucatalyst.org/index.php/donate/
- Fieldworkder in Jordan – We have one of our members who is living in Jordan working with Syrians at a medical clinic. If you would like to personally support this member (they raise 100% of their support) then please contact Alicia Divers for more information or fill out the form below. Because of security reasons, I am unable to disclose their information.
Global Outreach Teams – Bayou City Fellowship will be taking two teams to Jordan in 2016 to work with Syrian Refugees. We are in the process of finalizing dates and should be available by October 15th.
Join the Bayou City Fellowship Refugee Team – As needs become more clear, we will be putting together a group of people that have a heart to reach refugees in our city and that can help lead these efforts among our people.