In September 2017, I was accepted at Central Alberta Refugee Effort as an EA in the classroom of adult ESL students, from many places around the world. Then in 2018, I was accepted to teach newcomer women English on Saturday mornings. These women know little-to-no English.
I feel blessed to work with people who come to Canada for a safer life for their children, wanting the best opportunities for them like all parents, everywhere. They are some of the most grateful, generous, and caring people I've ever interacted with. I've laughed, cried, worried, felt exhausted, dedicated long hours, visited in homes, and prayed for our little school, agency and everyone under the roof on quiet Saturday mornings before class starts.
In 2010, my husband and I were sent out to welcome a new family from a refugee camp in Sierra Leone: two half-sisters, and four of their six children (having fled due to war, the whereabouts of two children were unknown). It was a whirlwind eight months-or-so of helping them adjust and integrate.
I've recently wondered why I feel at home with newcomers. And why I feel protective, fierce love, and driven to help them feel a sense of acceptance, belonging, and hope for a future for them and their children. Well, I looked back on my own life and remembered all the times I, personally, didn't feel grounded in belonging and acceptance.
When you can see yourself in others and feel empathy, you can't help but feel the need to share your story, help someone along their path, and be a blessing with the gifts the Lord has blessed you with. When I spend more time in the Word, deepening my relationship with Him, I am ready to head out when His promptings point the way.
#IamSent while stationed at home.