Alison Watt

Refugee update (Regional Ecumenical Support Team) 2017 Year End Review         

Honada, Said, Nour, Ahmad and Ibrahim arrived in January 2016. ·        

Honada and Said have worked hard at improving their English through LINC classes, provided at North Shore Multicultural Society and with the support of a team of drivers and tutors. ·        

All of the kids have settled beautifully into school, with both schools advocating for appropriate levels of support for Nour and Ibrahim. 

The family has been able to access a number of specialists to deal with health and dental issues.

Said has gained Canadian work experience, working with Balraj Singh on house building and remodeling. ·         

5 birthday parties! ·        

A great deal of paperwork, including housing applications, permanent resident cards, health services, and many more. ·         Dealt with a robbery and a basement flood!

Still in the works: Finding long-term housing by the end of January and helping the family move. They are looking for a 2 or 3 bedroom place and hope to stay in their current neighborhood. ·        

Finding full time work for Said and part time work for Honada. ·        

Getting a driver’s license for Said. He now has proof of driving record, but we are trying to get a copy of the Driver training guide in Arabic so that he can pass the written test. Then he needs a few lessons and can take his full license.

 

Bukhari arrived in September 2016! ·        

Thanks to the careful attention of Wilna and Dave Parry and to Amyn, Bukhari had a very soft landing in Canada, had amazingly quick visits to the dentist, doctors, and CNIB, and got registered for classes for the visually impaired at VCC. ·        

He now has a part-time, live-in caregiver named Max, and both men are now living in a very nice apartment in Vancouver, walking distance to VCC. ·        

Bukhari is working hard to learn Braille, how to use a talking computer, how to use his talking iPhone, English, and white cane skills. On top of all of that, he is learning to navigate his new apartment and live as independently as he can.

 

Thank you:  A huge round of applause goes to everyone who participated in the many fundraisers, made requests of friends and family, and donated funds to support this wonderful cause. Yes, we are making a difference in the world and we will keep doing it with your amazing support! Your time, treasure and talents have made so much possible in one year. This year has been very busy and very rewarding.

A HUGE THANK YOU to all of you who have provided support with your prayers, your funds and fundraising, your driving, your patience, your services, and your kindness toward our new Canadians. An extra big thankyou goes to the amazing team of translators who have provided such caring and patient support in Arabic, Swahili and Somali.

Shannon Muir (St. Agnes) has spearheaded the work of this tremendous group in 2016 and done a simply marvellous job.  Thank you Shannon!