I thought it would be helpful to compile resources here for those of you who are looking to know more about resettlement and how the refugee process works. The resources are a mixture of those found in the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, and New Zealand.
- Federal Office of Refugee Resettlement
- Refugee Council – United Kingdom
- Five Ways You Can Help Refugees in Germany
- Refugee Council of Australia
- Red Cross New Zealand
- Refugee Arrival Data
- Refugee Council USA
- Refugee Fact Sheet
- Refugee Myths and Realities
- How to Resettle a Refugee – Self Sufficiency in Eight Months
- An Overview of Refugee Resettlement in the United States
How to Help:
- Make Refugee Kits! Family and Infant Refugee Kits I cannot stress enough how useful these kits are. We have taken over 100 to Iraq and Turkey and sent even more. It’s an excellent Christmas project. I reached out to the folks at Medical Teams and here is what they said:“Thank you so much for your email – and your support for our mission. We will gladly accept shipments at our Tigard Oregon Distribution Center – 14150 SW Milton Court, Tigard OR 97224. Again, thank you for your interest in our project – We are so touched by the kindness and compassion from people around the US!”
- International Orthodox Christian Charities
- Heart for Lebanon
- Purchase Worlds Apart: A Third Culture Kid’s Journey or Between Worlds: Essays on Culture & Belonging (or both!) and royalties go to direct programs for refugees.
Note: I purposely did not put in the typical large organizations, namely because I think it’s easier to know where your money goes with the smaller organizations. I can absolutely vouch for the low overhead of these organizations as well as seeing in person the work that is being done with refugees.
- What You Need to Know about the Syrian Crisis
- The Global Refugee Crisis: Region by Region
- How to Make ISIS Fall on its Own Sword
- What ISIS Really Wants
- Why did ISIS attack Paris?
Why You Should Care:
- Welcoming the Refugee – Choosing to Walk Away from Fear
- Yearning to Breathe Free
- Storytelling: Refugees Stories in Their Own Words
- List of well-known refugees – most notably, Albert Einstein.
In closing, I want to say this: there’s an acronym in social media “smdh.” It stands for “shaking my damn head.” As I see the reaction to refugees by fellow Christians as evidenced by statements by Christian leaders, I am literally shaking my damn head. I don’t get it. We have made refugees the scapegoats for egregious, condemnable acts of violence. So I issue three challenges:
Our God knows no national boundaries or citizenship. He is present in tragedy and he hears our ‘whys’.
A Call to Pray: “In the midst of tragedy, I am called to pray. Called to pray to a God who hears and loves, a God who is present in tragedy and accepts our “why’s”, a God who knows no national boundaries or citizenship, a God who took on our human pain and suffering when he ‘willingly endured the cross’.”*
A Call to Walk Away from Fear: I’m going to repeat what I have said publicly many times: Don’t make safety an idol. Choose to walk away from fear. Choose to love as you are loved; choose to offer your heart and your resources to those in need.
A Call to Love: Governments may do their thing, they may close their doors; as a Christian, I don’t have that option. Period.
“But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.29 If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them. 30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back.31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.” Luke 6: 26-31