Ghost of Midnight

… about neighbors, community and Front Porch Forum

College kids take in refugee family; neighbors rally

Posted on Friday, September 28, 2007 by No comments yet

I was moved when I read the following post by Therese on the ONE East Neighborhood Forum yesterday…

My neighbors have temporarily taken in a refugee family from Somalia who fell through the cracks during a resettlement move. The family landed in Burlington last night with only the clothes on their backs. There is a mom, dad and four kids. The boys are 2 and 5 and the girls are 8 and 10 and they are average size kids for their ages. My neighbors are college kids who have opened up their home to this family until they get into the system. Whatever vouchers, etc, that they are supposed to have….did not come through yet.

Regardless, they need some more clothes and we have done okay with the parents but need to get some children’s clothes and shoes. I gave them some stuffed animals but am sure toys would be helpful too. If you have anything in decent shape lying around that you don’t need in sizes that you think might fit these kids….would you be willing to donate it to them? We will give anything not needed or that does not fit to the Salvation Army or St. Vincent De Paul or anywhere else you might suggest that it could help people. If you have anything you want to donate please just leave it on the front porch. Thank you in advance for anything you donate. Peace to everyone!

So now today’s follow up really made my day…

When I posted last night asking for some clothes and toys for the Somalian refugee family I had no idea that people would be so incredibly generous!!! The response we received today was overwhelming. We have plenty of clothes and toys for them right now. In fact we will be bringing the extras to other refugees and to some local thrift store/charity places.

The college students who are putting them up said that the family will hopefully be moving into an apartment within a week or so and at that point they may need some more things for the house. I will post again if and when they inform me of specific items the family might need.

I wish everyone who donated things could have seen the looks on the children’s faces when we gave them the toys and clothes. Last night they were timid and scared and wearing clothes that did not fit. Tonight they were not scared, already learned some English (wow, kids can learn a language fast) and bewildered but happy. It was also important that they had some warmer clothes and now they do!!! Thanks to all of you who donated to help this family!!

In a neighborhood that has it struggles with irresponsible college students, the beautiful action taken by these UVM kids to help a family in need is wonderful. And I’m glad that their neighbors can see that through Front Porch Forum, and that so many folks are pitching in with clothes, toys, etc.

Posted in: Burlington, College Students, Community Building, Front Porch Forum, Local Online, Neighborhood, Social Networking, Stories, Vermont

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