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“Welcome Home” : Refugee Resettlement Apartment Set-Up by John Price

We want to share a sincere THANK YOU to the 20 St. Francis parishioners who pitched in to clean, set up, stock and transform an apartment into a home for a refugee family coming from the Democratic Republic of Congo. The family of five: a young married couple and their 3-year old son, along with a grandmother, were treated to a fully furnished and stocked apartment to jump start their new life in our community.  They had a successful move-in yesterday and were overwhelmed with gratitude for their new home!

Our team over-delivered the minimum guidelines and set up a beautiful apartment with weeks of food and supplies along with donated gift cards, wall decorations, electronics, appliances, toys, books, a culturally appropriate home-cooked meal, and a personalized poster to welcome this family into our community.

We prayed together as we started that our works would demonstrate our love to our new neighbors and provide them with hope and optimism as they begin their journey in the US.

Our team worked 100+ man hours to clean, shop, prep and bring this project to life. Things started in an energetic cacophony last week with a dirty apartment, tons of boxes, deliveries throughout the day, furniture everywhere, bad lighting, freezing rain, and yes- angry geese in the parking lot. This transformed into a beautiful orchestra of coordination, levity, laughs, problem-solving and teamwork. We had a diverse crew of individuals, couples and families that came together as one team and joyously worked together to sweat the details with care and love to transform the space into a beautiful home.

We left exhausted, energized, and hopeful that our new neighbors would feel the love that was poured out from our St. Francis Community.   Thanks to all for making this a success!

I also have great news to share!  Thank you to all that asked about the family from Afghanistan that we previously helped which prompted me to check in with the non-profit resettlement agency (USCRI) for an update.  Trevor and I received this beautiful update today:  “I just spoke to the case manager assigned to the Afghan family whose apartment you set up and have some good news to share!  The two daughters have started college and the son is working at a dentist’s office and will go to school to get certification for dentistry and is taking ESL classes at Wake Tech!  So they are all doing very well.  Feel free to share with your parish!  Thank you again for everything.”

Amazing!  All of this makes me so proud to be part of the St. Francis community!