As a boat person that came to Canada in 1980, Minh was inspired to give back after hearing about the Inception of Lifeline Syria (June 2015), a reincarnation of Operation Lifeline on Metro Morning. Operation Lifeline formed in 1979 to assist sponsor groups and welcomed 60,000 boat people from Indo China to Canada. Lifeline Syria set out a goal to assist sponsor groups to welcome 1,000 Syrian refugees coming to Canada; but they have far surpassed this goal.
Minh called out to all her friends, and they steadily responded. While Minh was on the receiving end and was familiar with what was provided to her and her family, she did not know all the preparation and requirement to be a sponsor. She and good friend, Cathy, attended a few sessions offered by Lifeline Syria to learn about the process. Throughout the summer, more and more friends expressed interest… our first team meeting, held on November 9th, was filled with great emotion, excitement and enthusiasm. Attendees left the meeting with a lot of information and decisions to be made to join the team.
Our second meeting was held on December 4, 20 friends attended. The meeting was packed with many great ideas and action plans. 8 signed up to be core members while the others committed to be supporting members.
Since then, the team has been working very hard and have achieved:
- our website
- draft budget
- high level project plan and have resources allocated to oversee the following areas:
- Sponsorship Application process
- Fundraising and Budgeting
- Housing Search and Preparation
- Welcome Orientation and On-Going Settlement
- Healthcare, Education, and Legal support (if required)
- Language Support
- Employment and Culture
- joined Ryerson University’s Lifeline Syria Challenge
We are very proud and appreciative to be part of Ryerson University’s Lifeline Syria Challenge. This opportunity offers our team many benefits, namely:
- Ryerson students involvement
- Provide assistance with application process
- Access to other sponsor groups
- Access to their portal for donations (tax deductible)
… onto the next step!
Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) requires us to raise a minimum of $27,000 to sponsor our family of four. However, in order to start the sponsor group application, our team must raise 75% of $27,000. Your support is much appreciated to help us move forward to the next step!
January 12, 2016 – results came in from Ryerson! Within three weeks, we raised an unbelievable amount of $30,732!!! We are touched by everyone who’ve generously donated: including our friends, our families, as well as our team members! THANK YOU!!!
Our team is now working diligently to start the application process and planning for the settlement of our new family. The heavy lifting is about to begin… Wish us luck!!
Application process has been in the works since we found out we’ve reached our fundraising achievement.
All Next steps questions to Ryerson along with IMM5440 and IMM5492 have been submitted to Ryerson this week!
As the Ryerson program has grown rapidly, a Sponsoring Team Agreement has been developed to provide structure of the program and it also includes financial guidelines for the sponsoring group. This is currently being reviewed by our core team and will be signed by February 1.
Two Ryerson students, Hirra and Khuluud, have joined our team. We have been working diligently on the following in order to be ready for our family’s arrival:
- Finance planning for the team and the family
- Housing search
- Settlement plan