by Heather Hauck
The United States admits tens of thousands of refugees each year, all who are looking for a fresh start often come with only the clothes in their backs, much less kitchen supplies. When they enter the states, they are starting life from the ground up.
Recently, Mars Hill member Jeremy Santy’s community group used MicroMission
funds to help some of these families start their new lives. Santy’s Ballard group partnered with World Relief
, a faith-based organization that relocates and transitions refugees who come from places such as Bosnia, Vietnam, and Ethiopia, among others.
Santy had personally worked with World Relief in the past and was eager to work with them again, this time with his community group. "We are a small community group, and we saw compiling kitchen sets as something within our means and abilities," he said in an email.
With $500 in MicroMission funds, he and his group members set out to buy all the necessities for a working kitchen–including pots, pans, utensils, and dinnerware–for four refugee families, who would settle near World Relief’s regional office
"We bring a lot of stuff with us. When a refugee comes, they come with nothing, kind of bare bones. They don’t know what’s going to happen," Santy said. After coming in under-budget, the group used bought bus passes for the families.
The community group plans to work with World Relief again, hopefully with more MicroMission funds, said Santy. "We see the refugee population of Seattle growing, and it is a population that is in great need."
Santy said the refugee families were "overjoyed, excited, and thankful" to receive simple items like pots and pans. "It is nice to be able to give to others as God has so graciously given to us," he added.
The Mars Hill Church MicroMission fund offers small grants to assist community groups and campuses serve their neighbors and address local needs. Have your community group or project leader apply here.