Settlement worker Bushra Alwahab helps newcomer Ismail Al-Youssef tell his story as a Syrian refugee during a special forum hosted by Mission Community Services.

Refugee forum held to share stories, experiences

More than 50 community leaders attend event, hosted by Mission Community Services.

  • Nov. 25, 2016 4:00 p.m.

About 50 community leaders attended The Power of Small: Refugees Welcome cafe-style forum on Nov. 19 put on by Mission Community Services Society (MCSS) at Martin’s Downtown.

Stories of refugees from Syria and the Congo were told by Mission newcomers Alex Kabala (Congo) and Ismail Al-Youssef (Syria) as they made their way from strife to the safety of Mission.

Volunteers and faith groups spoke at the forum to help create a better understanding of what is happening with the 24 refugees/permanent residents in the community.

Volunteers Lesley Drown and Ann Murdoch outlined the volunteer challenges when managing support from the community, ranging from offering rides to storing furniture.

Parkside Church Pastor Clint Nelson explained how his church sponsorship for the Congolese worked, and how long-term volunteer commitment is as important as the funding.

Karl Rhebergen of Mission World Renew International Church told the crowd about the soon-to-arrive-in-Mission Iraqi family and what expectations his congregation had with the project.

Manager of newcomer services, Karen Laing, said the settlement program at MCSS switched into a different gear with the arrival of refugees while serving the traditional stream of newcomers.

“What makes us great is the power of small. We turn our advantages into opportunities,” she said.


Just Posted

Trial begins for man charged with 2010 murder of Mandy Johnson

Langley single mom was fatally shot while in vehicle in Abbotsford

KPU campuses go smoke-free starting Jan. 21 – and that includes vaping

‘We didn’t make this decision lightly’ says prez of the Surrey-based institution

City wants to know about danger quakes pose to Abbotsford’s dike system

City commissioning report to examine seismically unstable flood protections

Woman charged in Abbotsford mall stabbing served time for 2001 killing

Victim in Edmonton killing was stabbed eight times with kitchen knife

Trial date scheduled for man charged with killing Abbotsford officer

Oscar Arfmann slated to go to trial in New Westminster in January 2019

VIDEO: Orcas put on a show near Hornby Island

Louis Jobodin shares photos and video of his experience

VIDEO: Nurse’s experience treating Rohingya refugees heart-wrenching

Kalisse Barwich spent three weeks working inside 24-bed Rohingya care unit in Bangladesh

Packed house gives Giants extra boost

Largest crowd at Langley Events Centre since opening night last season

Bank of Canada hikes interest rate to 1.25%, cites strong economic data

The rate increase is expected to prompt Canada’s large banks to raise their prime lending rates

5 to start your day

BC Liberals staffer in court for ethnic vote scandal, friends mourn boy killed in Vancouver and more

Trump aces mental aptitude test designed by Canadian immigrant

“This is a good example, I think, that will be helpful to change views about immigration. And maybe for Mr. Trump himself to consider immigrants as contributors to advancing science, advancing our societies.”

Rival Koreas agree to form first unified Olympic team

The rival Koreas took major steps toward reducing their bitter animosity

Canada, U.S. lead call for sanctions against North Korea

Foreign ministers from 20 countries are meeting in Vancouver to discuss security and stability on the Korean Peninsula

Federal NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh announces engagement

Federal NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh engaged to clothing designer Gurkiran Kaur

Most Read