Local group to give Syrian refugee family new hope

A local group is doing its part to sponsor a Syrian refugee family and bring them to Victoria.

In the wake of the Syrian refugee crisis that has dominated headlines recently, a local group is doing its part to sponsor a Syrian refugee family and bring them to Victoria.

The Victoria Refugee Sponsorship Group, comprised of roughly seven individuals, has been working with the Anglican Diocese of B.C. and the parish of St. Peter and St. Paul to bring a family of six — a mother, father, three children and grandmother, to settle in Victoria.

The family fled their home and are now taking refuge in Turkey until they can come to Canada. The father’s sister, who is living in Victoria, is helping with the process.

Sabine Lehr, one of the volunteers and immigrant services manager at the Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria, has been in contact with the family over the phone and said they are getting closer to welcoming them.

“It was exciting. So far we’d only heard of them and about them and it put a voice to it. We’ve seen pictures,” Lehr said of the phone call.

According to Lehr, the family has been given refugee status and is entering into the final process including medical exams and security checks before they can make the trip.

In order to help the family, Lehr and the group are trying to raise roughly $50,000 — with most of the proceeds going towards the cost of living for the family’s first year.

Over the last year, they’ve hosted a number of fundraising events. Most recently, they’ve established an online fundraising campaign. Since its launch, they’ve raised more than $8,000 of their $10,000 online goal. But the group is still only halfway to their $50,000 goal.

For Lehr, who has dual German and Canadian citizenship, she feels a historical responsibility to help refugees.

“My country of birth was the cause of one of the most horrific tragedies the world has seen — the holocaust,” she said. “It caused a huge number of people to become refugees. Because of that, I can’t turn back time, but I can live in the present and contribute to making sure I respond in the here and now to something similar that’s unfolding in the world.”

The family is expected to make the trip in the next few months. In the meantime, Lehr said they’ll look for housing.

The next fundraiser is Saturday, Oct. 10 at the St. Peter and St. Paul Anglican Parish (1379 Esquimalt Rd.) and will include Mediterranean cuisine, Syrian music and a silent auction. It is a minimum $25 donation.

To donate visit vicsponsorshipgroup.wordpress.com.

 

Just Posted

Victoria police investigate dumpster fire in gated alleyway

VicPD and Victoria Fire Department respond to fire on Johnson Street

Pacific FC signs 24-year-old defensive midfielder from Panama

González joins the roster following the team’s 2-2 tie game against York9 FC.

Pacific FC game ends with tie against York9 on Saturday

PFC’s defender scored an own goal off a deflection, putting the game at 2-2

Famed Syrian artist displays paintings created while living in refugee camps

Farid Abdulbaki’s ‘Between Two Worlds’ exhibit will be displayed May 24-26 in Victoria

Mighty Garage Sale offers boost to Metchosin groups

Metchosin Community Association holds annual sale on May 25 and 26

VIDEO: Horseshoe pitching association appeals to Greater Victora youngsters

Youth horseshoe pitching club offers fun for all ages, says GVHPA

Raptors beat Bucks 118-112 in 2OT thriller

Leonard has 36 points as Toronto cuts Milwaukee’s series lead to 2-1

‘Teams that win are tight’: B.C. Lions search for chemistry at training camp

The Lions added more than 50 new faces over the off-season, from coaching staff to key players

Rescue crews suspend search for Okanagan kayaker missing for three days

71-year-old Zygmunt Janiewicz was reported missing Friday

B.C. VIEWS: Reality of our plastic recycling routine exposed

Turns out dear old China wasn’t doing such a great job

B.C. ferry stops to let black bear swim past near Nanaimo

Queen of Oak Bay brakes for wildlife in Nanaimo’s Departure Bay

Mother dead, child in critical condition after carbon monoxide poisoning at Shuswap campground

The woman was found unresponsive insider her tent and the youth was taken via air ambulance to hospital

Canada’s parole officers say correctional system has reached breaking point

About half of Canada’s federal parole officers work inside penitentiaries and correctional institutions

Montreal researchers create audible hockey puck for visually impaired players

Three years ago, Gilles Ouellet came up with the idea for a puck that makes a continuous sound

Most Read