Support the San Diego Syrian Refugee Community through Light & Color Arts
Serving Youth & Syrian Refugees
According to the news, San Diego, the nation's eighth-largest city, has received 626 Syrian refugees—more than any other U.S. city—and more are arriving every week. This has put a tremendous burden on the resettlement agencies. As a result, there is an ever-widening gap between the services they’re able to provide and the needs of the families who are coming. These families have already had long painful journeys and many are not prepared for the challenges they face in the U.S.
Watching the news can be discouraging as we learn of suffering, crises and tragedies throughout the world. Many of us want to help, but the needs are so great, it seems hopeless. Against such monumental needs, we often don’t have the courage to begin.
But consider the following oft-told story:
The old man walked along the shore and saw a child in the distance. The young boy walked toward him, pausing every few seconds to stoop and toss something into the water. Once close enough to be heard over the roaring waves, the man asked the boy what he was doing.
“Throwing starfish back into the ocean,” the boy replied. “A storm has left them on the beach where they will soon die in the sun.”
The old man swept his arm along the wide expanse of shoreline littered by tens of thousands of the fragile sea creatures. His eyes were sad as he explained to the lad that he really couldn’t make much difference with his small efforts. Undeterred, the boy stooped again and gently lifted a small golden specimen.
“It makes a difference to this one, sir,” he said, and sent the bright star sailing into the sea.”
(Adapted from Loren Eiseley's 1969 essay, The Star Thrower)
The news of tragically displaced people is no longer a story set in faraway places. After seeing the refugees’ vast needs first hand, a small team of us have been trying to be “star throwers” in San Diego.
We regularly visit families to let them know they are not alone. We help them with basic needs like enrolling kids in school, following up with case workers, getting ID’s and making doctor’s appointments. We’ve provided for some of their material needs with things like bicycles, helmets, bunk beds, blankets and mattresses.
The families also need financial support. Although they receive some assistance from the government, it isn’t enough to cover all of their basic needs until the day when someone in the family can earn a paycheck—especially when many families have the higher expense of living in hotel rooms (due to San Diego’s housing shortage).
Although the needs are great, and seemingly unending, we do see we are making a very great difference for a few individuals and families.
We invite you, with great joy and expectation, to be a part of this difference.
Your donations will allow us to continue in the work we’ve already started as well as allow us to supplement the cost of housing when needed. Your donations will go a long way towards helping these families feel welcomed and cared for as they work to settle in and start a new life here in San Diego.
You can be part of these stories of healing and hope!
Thank you for donating to Light & Color Arts to help the San Diego Syrian Refugee Community. Light & Color is fiscally sponsored by The Grove Center for the Arts & Media, a Southern California non-profit organization. Please use the Paypal links below or download the PDF donation form to mail in your gift today. You will receive a donation receipt from The Grove Center for the Arts & Media.
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To donate by mail, please download The Grove Donation Form.
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