An Update from the Refugee Support Network

There are many opportunities for continued involvement with refugee families in the Holland area, despite it looking different than originally planned. Part of the work Hope Church has committed to is being extra support for those churches who are struggling to meet the needs of their families. Some of the Hope Church volunteers have done transportation, tutoring, and teaching English. Others have been able to bring meals or goods. And many more have lifted these families up in prayer. Part of the work I have been doing is staying aware of all that is happening in our community. I have connected with many churches through a community network and that is largely how I learn where, when and how to mobilize volunteers. The other piece Hope Church has committed to is staying aware of what is happening within the community of Holland. This has been partnering with churches, advocacy, or events. These two commitments go hand in hand as they encourage Hope Church to stay aware and ready to act.

This update comes with a request. My internship at Hope Church will be ending at the end of April, which means the support network will need a new point person. One of the most important tasks of that point person is attending the monthly Holland area network meetings. The network meetings are the best place to learn of needs and the energy of the community. I am unable to attend these meetings this semester due to my class schedule, therefore the need for someone willing to attend is pretty immediate. Many in the community have come to appreciate the presence of Hope Church, and it is my desire to continue to provide that.

Please contact me at alyssa.anten@westernsem.edu if you are interested in getting involved through volunteering with families, receiving emails and information regarding what is happening in the community, attending the monthly community network meetings, or becoming the point person in the Spring.

Thank you for continued efforts and interest in supporting our community.

~Alyssa Anten, Seminary Intern