As one of Canada's largest humanitarian development agencies, with experience working with refugees in Lebanon and Jordan, World Vision says Canadian newcomers will need much more than a roof over their heads and three square meals a day --- it's absolutely essential for them to feel welcome and supported.
Top 5 ways Canadians can go beyond cash donations to help incoming Syrian families:
- Understand the crisis & talk about it: do your homework, understand what they have been through and dispel myths with friends, families and co-workers to promote positive perceptions.
- Chat about it online: use the Twitter #CanadiansWelcome as a forum for ideas on how to help, World Vision will share friendly messages and videos with resettlement organizations.
- Be a good neighbour: contact local sponsorship committees or refugee services organizations and offer your time and your friendship. Offer transportation, free space and jobs.
- Donate professional time: translators, language tutors, counsellors and other professionals can assist the adaption to life in Canada.
- Do you own fundraising: host a yard sale of bake sale, organize a local community event, donate clothing and household items but make sure it's specifically requested by receiving organizations.
"This is a golden opportunity for Canadians to show a true Canadian welcome and open our hearts to families who have been through so much. Syrian families will be adjusting to a whole new life --- a new climate --- new everything --- but there's a lot of practical things that we can do to help them feel right at home. It takes sponsorship or government assistance to bring these newcomers to Canada, but a warm welcome and ongoing support will help them thrive in their new home here in Canada."
-Hugh Brewster, Manager of Canadian Programs, World Vision Canada
MISSISSAUGA, ON - Today World Vision is urging Canadians to support newly arriving Syrian families and unveiled a list of practical tips on how to help them adjust to life in Canada.