In response to the staggering violence in Syria, many in the Cowichan Valley are motivated to share this safe haven. The Cowichan Intercultural Society (CIS) is quickly acting to address this issue and alleviate some of the stress that has erupted from this crisis. CIS has begun meeting with members of the community interested in refugee sponsorship to begin the process of officially sponsoring families.
How Can I Help?
1. Make a donation
Cowichan Intercultural Society has established a Refugee Support Fund for our community
• Your donations are eligible for a charitable tax receipt
• The funds will be used to support refugees in our community and to assist sponsoring groups
• For more information, call 250 748 3112
• To donate online, visit https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/cowichan-valley-intercultural-and-immigrant-aid-society/
United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR)
• The UNHCR coordinates global refugee responses, including support for host countries providing assistance to refugees
Gather items (as needed by Sponsorship Groups) to create a welcoming home:
• furniture, household goods, clothing and so on
Connect with Sponsoring Groups to:
• take a turn driving newcomers to appointments
• prepare a meal or outing
Volunteer with the Cowichan Intercultural Society
• be an English language tutor
• be a professional mentor
• help fundraise for refugee supports
• help create a welcoming and inclusive community
3. Sponsor a refugee or refugee family
• Sponsorship is a one-year commitment to fully support the refugee/family
• A decision to sponsor does not mean someone is immediately granted entry into Canada. It can be a slow process. Patience and perseverance are required.
•Contact the Cowichan Intercultural Society to learn more about local refugee/family sponsorship initiatives
• More information through Citizenship and Immigration Canada:
• Looking for a helpful resource? The Refugee Sponsorship Training Program supports sponsors: http://www.rstp.ca/en/
4. Lobby the Canadian Government
• Let’s hold our new Prime Minister to account!