June 2019

Update from the Refugee Sponsorship Committee

Our first sponsored family
West Vancouver Baptist Church has been blessed to sponsor a Refugee Claimant family through our partnership with Journey Home, a Christian organization that assists Refugee Claimants in BC. Inspired by God’s love, Journey Home welcomes Refugee Claimants into our community by partnering with churches who provide housing, settlement support, and relational care to needy families.

Our family was being persecuted in their home country and arrived in Vancouver in Fall of 2018. The identity of our family is being protected to ensure the safety of their family back home. We helped the family by providing them with food, transportation and groceries. We have found them an apartment to live in (which is a huge challenge in the current real estate market), and have helped them move in with the furnishings donated by the church. Most important, we have been able to provide them with friendship, love and guidance.   The family is now settled in the Lower Mainland and is doing well. The children are attending school and the mother is learning English. The family is healthy and they truly appreciate the help and love they have received.

What are refugee claimants?
Refugee Claimants (aka Asylum Seekers) are, by definition, already in Canada, having fled their homes often with only a plastic bag of belongings or the clothes they are wearing. Such families do not come here by choice; they are escaping persecution and are in desperate need of help.

Because Refugee Claimants are processed through a different immigration stream from refugees who apply from abroad, claimants are not queue jumpers and are not taking the place of refugees who are coming to Canada from abroad for resettlement.

What can you do to help?
Please pray for our family, that the father will find work as they seek to be contributing members of our society, and that they will thrive, be happy and live in safety.
Please pray for the thousands of refugees who arrive in BC every year.
Please pray that the Refugee Committee members will continue to have strength and wisdom and be guided by God’s love.
Please pray our church will continue to love our neighbour and glorify Christ.

“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me.” (Matthew 25:35)