We are welcoming our next family of Asylum Seekers next week!
At our November 1st B2R meeting, the Board voted to reach out to our partner in sponsoring Asylum Seekers, Kino Border Initiative in Nogales to discuss the possibility of taking on the support of another family. This decision was not taken lightly. We have raised just over half the money we need from sustaining donors (and have faith more will come), we have an apartment that will be ready in January, and we have two families ready to shower them with hospitality and to help orient them to Rutland while they’re waiting for the apartment to be ready. We are also working on a possible pro bono attorney.
KBI was excited to hear from us because they had a family that needs some special consideration, and they knew that B2R could welcome and sponsor this family with sensitivity and affirmation. Our new family is a gay male couple with their 5-year-old son. In most of Latin America, being openly gay is a courageous act that usually leads to persecution and real danger. Even in countries that say same-sex marriage is legal, the reality doesn’t match the laws.
How can you help? Please read carefully below to know what is needed and how you can support the new family and B2R’s sponsorship of them: Please coordinate all in-kind donations through Ellen Green – 802-779-4217- before delivering anything to the B2R office at Grace Church. Our storage space is limited, and we are trying to be very organized with our donation collections. Thank you for your generosity and understanding.
1. Team of volunteers: drivers, translators, a medical liaison, English tutor(s), social/recreation folks, volunteer opportunities coordinator, and team facilitator. (They speak some English, so don’t let language deter you!) All volunteers will be trained, and we can work the training around your schedule.
2. Airfare: If you have frequent flyer miles that you are willing to use and your plan allows you to donate them, please contact me at 802-779-4217. I don’t know the travel dates yet, but it will be some time next week, hopefully.
3. Clothing – Adult men’s clothing – tops would be size medium, and pants are 30×30 and 32×32. The two men do need warm winter coats, and all in the family could use warm hats. Child’s clothing 5-6. The little boy has a good winter coat already. Money can also be put in their shopping fund so they can choose some of their own clothes (we found out with our first families that that was fun, educational, and ultimately satisfying – shopping will be at thrift stores in the area). Money for new boots will be important. Well-fitting boots with new treads are really important for people who have never experienced snow and ice!
4. Pro bono primary care doctor – Drs. Hogenkamp have been and continue to be incredibly generous in their care of our single man and family of 3 (soon to be 4!). We would like to find another doctor who would also be generous and caring for this new family. RRMC has granted full financial assistance for our Asylum Seekers for any hospital-related care, and the Rutland Free Clinic offers them free dental care. However, a primary care physician is still needed.
5. The apartment will come furnished, and at this point we don’t see any need for furniture, linens or housewares. We will let you know after they move in if they need anything.
As always, each donor will receive a thank you card or letter for in-kind gifts that can be used for tax deductions. It is important that you let us know the value of any in-kind gifts. B2R is a non-profit tax-deductible 501(c)(3). And we use the information regarding the value of your donations to seek out grants.
En solidaridad con gozo (in solidarity with joy)!