WHO WE ARE
One world, One Love started as a response to a call for donations and has grown into an organization of hundreds seeking to make a meaningful change into the lives of refugees. 1W1L aims to act as an intermediary between organizations such as International Rescue Committee (IRC) and Church World services (CWS) to act as a rapid response team in order to aid and supplement their efforts. As a group of volunteers our aim is deploy a team of volunteers to help with the immediate as well as long term resettlement efforts. Our goal is to be where and however we are most needed.
Mission Statement: Our Vision is a world in which all feel welcomed and loved. Our Mission is tohelp refugees and immigrants start their new lives with dignity, respect, support and love.
Accomplishments thus Far: As an auxiliary volunteer force we have coordinated with IRC and CWS to help set up apartments, which have included a volunteer force to procure, transport, store and deliver donations, including: essential furniture and household items, and clean, furnish and set up the apartments for the incoming families. Furthermore, we have aided in long term and targeted support for the resettlement of the families. Our goal is to provide the delta where normal assistance and support is not met. We have deployed volunteers in real time basis to help IRC and other organizations, clean, furnish as well as settle families. Many times, it takes two to three weeks for the families to be enrolled in public assistance and to obtain other crucial services. Donations from our volunteer provide families with sustenance and support in that crucial time it takes for them to receive their benefits and other assistance. Furthermore, donations from our volunteers help provide families with essentials that are not covered by public assistance or resettlement such as age appropriate toys, additional clothing, furniture (beyond the dining room table, sofa and bed per person provided by the resettlement agencies), household items, groceries, community activities and other needed support. We have also provided job assistance, supper clubs, support navigating schools and other social systems as well as advocacy with landlords.
Vision for the future: Amongst many other lofty goals that we discussed, one of our main goals is to help as many families as possible re-settle into this country seamlessly. This includes having a rapid response team ready to be deployed when there is real need. It also includes having a bridge of volunteers who are ready to provide essential goods, support, mentoring and comradery as needed. This group will be one of the many volunteer forces that will help channel the volunteer spirit and support the real time need for donations, advocacy and companionship.
Next Steps and How to get involved: Due to privacy concerns working directly with families may require a background check and commitment of supporting resettlement efforts. The goal is to work towards establishing programming and community building activities that will act as a bridge between the volunteer community and the refugee community. To that end, we will work to establish various community programming, training and events.
WHAT WE DO
Our initial goal is to help resettled families feel safe, welcome, and supported as they transition to their new home. After the initial settlement period, our main goal becomes supporting families to become self-sufficient. Through education, advocacy and companionship, we strive to support these amazing families as they get on their feet and share their talents, skills and hard work with their new community. How we do this:
COVER INITIAL BASIC NEEDS
– Help clean, stock and furnish apartments for incoming families
– Greet families as they arrive in their new home so they know they are not alone
– Collect specific donations for families based on their needs
– Provide weather-appropriate clothing for the family members in each new season for their first year
– Ensure that families have food before their food stamps are activated
-Act as a liaison and advocate for families as they get set up in their new environment (including school enrollment, government program assistance, landlord issues, etc)
– Help them navigate their new environment
PROVIDE A FAMILY FRIEND GROUP TO OUR MOST VULNERABLE FAMILIES
– Match up a resettled family with a group of volunteers who will offer a year of friendship, guidance and advocacy along the path to becoming self-suffiicient.
FACILITATE A TUTORING AND ENRICHMENT PROGRAM
– Provide a weekly program that includes ESL classes for the parents while the children get assistance with their school work, followed by a rotating enrichment program of either music, art or yoga/meditation.
PLAN OUTINGS AND EVENTS
– Coordinate day trips for the families to show them their beautiful country and allow them new, fulfilling experiences. Some trips include a day at the beach, a trip to the farm and a visit to the zoo.
– Host events to celebrate holidays or social engagements. This gives families an opportunity to build a community while getting an opportunity to relax and enjoy time with their family.
PROVIDE YOUTH SUPPORT
– Become a liaison between children and their schools
– Fundraise for specific causes such as sending children to summer camp
– Create social opportunities for children such as play groups and sports games