Refugee Project seeks volunteers

By TIA CAROL JONES
Contributing Writer

The Hyde Park Refugee Project is looking for more volunteers and tutors to help with its after school homework program.

“All of the refugee families we’re working with recognize the vital importance of education for their children, and they are grateful to the support our community is providing,” said Penny Visser, co-director of Hyde Park Refugee Project. “We’ve partnered with some of the local schools the children attend, and we’d love to expand those partnerships and provide more volunteers to work in the classrooms.”

Since the organization began in 2016, it has co-sponsored two Syrian families, resettled by RefugeeOne. The group also has supported two Syrian families and a Congolese family who have resettled in Hyde Park.

“The Hyde Park Refugee Project was formed in response to the devastating refugee crises in Syria and other parts of the world. Members of the Hyde Park community wanted to find a way to do something,” Visser said.

Hyde Park Refugee Project organization currently has 90 volunteers. These volunteers assist with child care, English language training, and participate in home visits. And they serve as liaisons when it comes to health care and public assistance.

Susan Augustine has been a volunteer with Hyde Park Refugee Project since it began. She said she was prompted to do so after the 2016 election cycle.

“I thought, ‘I need to do something positive in this world,’” she said. “We thought it would be wonderful to welcome a family as a family.”

To volunteer with Hyde Park refugee Project, email hydeparkrefugeeproject@gmail.com.

hpherald@hpherald.com