Last week, a group of nonprofits welcomed a bus of newcomers from Annunciation House in El Paso, Texas. Their countries of origin include Cuba, Nicaragua, Colombia and Ecuador. The Denver Welcome Center organized to support first generation newcomers resettle and to share in the welcoming work partners at the border have been engaged in for decades.
The Denver Welcome Center group, made up of The American Friends Service Committee, Casa de Paz, Colorado Hosting Asylum Network, and Denver Community Church began preparations in September. They had noticed an increase of people arriving in Colorado and received a request from Annunciation House in El Paso, TX to help as well. All of the organizations involved participated in a similar effort in 2019.
“We are ready to share in welcoming our neighbors and supporting them in becoming a part of our communities. For years Annunciation House and so many others have done the work of being our country’s welcome team. When they asked if we could open our arms and houses, our faith and our mission led us to say yes. Our positive and impactful experiences from 2019 gave us confidence that we can do this,” stated Pastor Dave Neuhausel of Denver Community Church.
“We stand with people arriving to Colorado, people who seek a chance to live in safety and peace. Everyone deserves to live dignified lives, including members of interdependent and connected border communities. We call on Congress and the administration to shift funding from enforcement and family separation, towards basic human infrastructure like health care and education that benefit us all, to eliminate long backlogs in immigration queues or afford people an immigration attorney if they can’t afford one, to support community organizations who are helping folks navigate this new country,” added Jennifer Piper of the American Friends Service Committee.
“We stand with people arriving to Colorado, people who seek a chance to live in safety and peace.”
Jennifer Piper, American Friends Service Committee
The City and County of Denver has provided technical assistance and emergency resources like cots and blankets to the short-term shelter, as well as enhanced coordination by connecting nonprofits and city offices to one another. Denver Community Church is coordinating volunteers and donations for the shelter.
Newcomers are quietly resettling across the state – Silverthorne, Loveland, Longmont, Fort Collins and Fort Morgan are a few of the cities named as destinations. Federal Emergency Management dollars are available to the State of Colorado to assist with food and shelter plus coordination if the state chooses to play a role. Over half of the people who arrived yesterday will move on to other locations including California, New Jersey and Florida. The remaining 6 families will resettle in Colorado. The community can get involved in that effort as well.
To support the short-term welcome center you can donate through Denver Community Church here.
To support the six families who will begin their lives in Colorado, alongside other newly arrived migrants, donate to the Colorado Hosting Asylum Network’s gofundme here.
To volunteer or involve your group or faith community, please register here.
For More Colorado News: ELSEMANARIO.US
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