From:                                   Kevin Chapman []

Sent:                                    Sunday, January 15, 2017 4:00 PM

To:                                        Kevin Chapman

Cc:                                        father olsen; Diana;; sue flanigan; jean goesbrink; tom goesbrink; maureen werner; katie brooks; michael plurad; bo plurad; kathy plurad; tracy james; louise mcveive; bill smith; mary smith; ellen wojeicki; kathy hartrich; joanne fogarty; william fogarty; jim shearburn; tess stephenitch; jana wade; bridgette mack; sue nash; pam/peter mahoney; carol henanny; bruce simeone; shelley ripplinger; kathy juzenas; vi farmer; carol bahmueller; christine novalis; claudia perreault; susan randich; christy murray; kathy baum; barb mecker; john flanigan;; cathy niehaus

Subject:                                HR Refugee Outreach

Attachments:                      Involvement Opportunities - Winter  2016.pdf; new american wish list.pdf


Happy New Year to all!


The Holy Redeemer Refugee Outreach mission is in business:  Nearly 60 HR parishioners have expressed an interest in assisting the International Institute's work in welcoming and resettling refugees in the St. Louis community.  These are people from many countries around the world, seeking refuge from poverty, political repression and, increasingly, war.  The good people at the Institute assist these 'new Americans' with housing, food, clothing, education and finding job opportunities. And vital to the Institute's work is the help and support of volunteers like ourselves.


1]  Volunteering at the Institute


This is accomplished in two ways:  Direct involvement with new refugee families - setting up apartments, stocking groceries and household items, home visits - require volunteers to attend a mandatory orientation session at the Institute. This process, which includes a simple background check, takes about 90 minutes, and is offered both during the day and evening.  Many of us - Father Brown included - have completed this step and are already working with the Institute in a variety of positions.  The Institute has not yet announced their schedule of 2017 orientation sessions, but have said they'll circulate dates/times early in February. 


But as you wait for this schedule to be announced, you can right now help out in a variety of 'episodic' activities that don't require formal orientation; opportunities include helping Institute staff sort donations, babysit children during immunizations . . . see the attached 'involvement opportunities' document for more information.


Finally, there are things we can do as a group:  We're working on a date now to assist in one of the Institute's Pot Luck dinners, working with other volunteer groups to put on a meal with refugee families, both those settled and some new arrivals. 


2]  Direct Donations


The International Institute has an on-going program of collecting various items needed to furnish and equip apartments for arriving families.  This includes such things as warm clothing, household and personal items - all of the things these families need to 'set up house' once the arrive.  You can get more information from the 'new american wish list' attached to this email. 


Finally, some of you have asked whether you need to coordinate your help at the institute through our 'committee'.  You do not.  You'll find staff contact information on both of the attached forms, and at the bottom of this email, and I encourage you to reach out directly to those Institute staff members and find a way to help that fits your own time and schedule constraints.  The HR Refugee Committee will continue to provide, via these group emails, new information as it becomes available and also organize those activities we elect to do as a group [the pot luck dinners, for instance].  And each of you can, and should, communicate your ideas and suggestions about this parish activity via this same group email format.  Simply hit 'reply all' and your message will be sent to everyone registered with the committee. 


You can also, of course, contact Diana or myself personally with any questions or concerns, at the email addresses shown below [I've also included my phone number]. 


Our direct contact at the International Institute is:  Katie Brooks/


HR committee contacts:


kevin chapman                                                                    diane goodwin                                            






May good bless you for your interest and your help.