Acadia Helping Refugees Association started in the Spring of 2016, when the Syrian Refugee crisis was everywhere in the mass media. A group of individuals got together who were trying to make as much of a difference as they could. After watching a short BBC documentary on the horrific state of Syria, we grouped together and started to plan events around fundraising money for the refugee families in the Annapolis Valley. As well as providing awareness on Acadia campus, and around the community, about the current situation and the new families joining our community.
Over the year we raised enough money to send the children of the refugee families to summer soccer camps. Allowing them to progress their English, as well social connections. Our goals this year are to raise money to either do the same thing or to get the family jobs within the community. One set back we have is finding jobs for the parents of the families since the government only gives them enough resources and money for the first year, in February they need to find work to support their household needs. One obstacle of finding jobs is the lack of English the parents know. Due to not being in school socializing and speaking English, the parents have a tougher time picking up the language. Although they can speak ok, they cook wonderfully and sometimes have a booth set up on Wednesday nights from 4:00-7:00 at the Wolfville Farmers market. We are looking to collaborate with other groups for fundraising events as well as reaching out into the community for more community support and awareness for the families. We have word that more families are coming to New Minas as well as the Annapolis Valley in the near future.
We are also looking to raise more awareness and acceptance in our town of the issues surrounding the crisis. Awareness is one of the key elements we are going to focus on. The media portrays refugees in a certain light and we want to actively provide the factual information to make sure individuals do not get caught up in what is being falsely portrayed.We have a Facebook page called ‘Acadia Helping Refugee Association Events’ where we post the events we are doing weekly. Some of these events included are, selling popcorn at
We have a Facebook page called ‘Acadia Helping Refugee Association Events’ where we post the events we are doing weekly. Some of these events included are, selling popcorn at JustUs! as well as doing movie nights at the KCIC located on the Acadia University campus. We are looking to host a dinner night, with the Syrian families cooking, and 100% of the proceeds go towards them in the New Year as well as many more community involved events.