I wanted to share with everyone an abridged version of message being distributed by the Mennonite Central Committee (MCC). It provides some background to the program I just outlined.
We are dealing with a crises of an immense proportion and it calls on us to respond in an unprecedented ways. Since 1979, MCC has been involved in the private sponsorship and resettlement of refugee program and we are thrilled to be connecting with you.
In refugee sponsorship, building relationships with refugees and creating a community for them is central to our program philosophy. Over the years we have worked with refugees, we have seen how friendships started and deep relationship formed between newcomers and their sponsors. Through this relationship, networks have been created and newcomers have been able to settle and integrate better in their new country.
The tragic event of last week in Europe has left painfully disturbing images of the Syrian refugees. Prior to that tragedy MCC had made the sponsorship of refugees from the Middle East its strategic priority. With the drowning of Aylan Kurdi, his brother, mother and many others, the need to respond has gotten even more urgent. For this reason MCC is reaching out to its supporting churches and the broader Canadian community to partner with us in responding to this crises of immense proportion by sponsoring a refugee family from either Syria or Iraq. Through our involvement in refugee sponsorship, hope for the once desperate has been renewed and a sense of purpose re established.
[Here] is the link to MCC Refugee Sponsorship Program FAQs: http://mcccanada.ca/sites/mcccanada.ca/files/media/common/documents/faq_2.pdf
In the past three years, we have involved in the resettlement of refugees through the blended (cost sharing) program with the Government. The refugees who have been identified for resettlement through the blended program will receive up to 40% of their financial support from the Government plus health coverage. The blended model of sponsorship has made sponsoring refugees possible for even the smallest congregations/community groups.
In terms of next steps, once your group says YES to sponsorship, I will ask you to form a core committee… The committee will then decide on the family size to sponsor based on the resources available. I will then take it from there and work with the group through the next steps of completing the sponsorship papers. Together, we can help a refugee family find safety and renewed hope in your community in less than 4 months.
Excitedly looking forward to working with you!
Manager of Events & Communications | IVEP Coordinator
Mennonite Central Committee
22-595 Carlton Street, St. Catharines, ON L2M 4Y2
Relief, development and peace in the name of Christ