Safehaven Update: Finding Our Family

by Gary Stevenson

Safehaven: Refugee Sponsorship Group, in conjunction with the Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria, are pleased to announce that they have entered into a verbal agreement to sponsor a Syrian Family of 7 to come to the "Land of Plenty", the Comox Valley. This family consists of a widowed mother of 35 with 4 small children(a boy 12, girl 10, boy 8 and girl 4) as well as the grandparents ages 60 and 62. They currently are sheltering in Turkey in dire circumstances in an urban city setting. There are 14 people sharing a garage without sanitation and no way to earn a living but to live off the kindness of others, which is waning. A common misconception in the West is that refugees are worse off in the designated camps but the reality is that these U.N. run camps provide shelter, security, sanitation, water, food, medical attention and education. In the urban settings the refugees are exposed to gangs, prostitution, child abduction and extortion.

     We are proceeding with the paperwork but it could take up to a year for this family to arrive. We appreciate all forms of support we have received to date!