Journey

The 2017 Education Scholarship for Refugees is open! For more information, or to apply, visit our scholarship page.

Journey is a group of people from Elevation who are interested and engaged in walking with refugees—sometimes literally and sometimes figuratively. We build relationships with people who have been forced to leave their country and have either come to Canada or are hoping to find a new home here.

There are an estimated 19.5 million refugees in the world. A refugee is very different from an immigrant in that immigrants move by choice while refugees are forced to flee their homes and countries due to well-founded fear of persecution.

Recognizing that in the wrong circumstances any of us could be refugees, our approach is one of walking alongside refugees on their journey to finding a safe home. We’ve walked with refugees from Colombia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Syria, Iraq, Bangladesh, and Rohingya people from Myanmar.

For more information about journeying with refugees, please contact Courtney at: journey@elevationwaterloo.org.

  • A group of refugees are walking from the Hungarian train station towards and into Austria. UNHCR / B. SOKOL

    A group of refugees are walking from the Hungarian train station towards and into Austria.
    UNHCR / B. SOKOL

  • Angolan refugees journey back to their homeland by train from Kinshasa. UNHCR / B. SOKOL

    Angolan refugees journey back to their homeland by train from Kinshasa.
    UNHCR / B. SOKOL

  • Syrian refugees head towards their shelter in Za'atri refugee camp after a perilous night journey to Jordan. UNHCR / B. SOKOL

    Syrian refugees head towards their shelter in Za’atri refugee camp after a perilous night journey to Jordan.
    UNHCR / B. SOKOL

Updates!

November 2017
Education Scholarship applications are live! Visit our scholarship page.

July 2017
Bring Them Home is excited to announce that the refugee family they are sponsoring will arrive in early July!

May 7th, 2017 Discussion Time
Refugee Awareness Day
In place of our regular Discussion Time, join the Journey team for an interactive time investigating the plight of refugees.  Together we’ll learn what is being done in our community, how our Elevation community is engaged, and how you might get involved.

January 12th, 2017, 7pm:
Join us at 22 Willow to explore how technology could be used to streamline and support refugee sponsorship.

December 27th, 2016:
Financial Support for Education
We are excited to announce that we are able to support three students pursuing post-secondary education in Jan. 2017!

December 7th, 2016, 7pm:
A Year+ in Sponsorship (Dessert Night)
Please join us in the Upstairs Room for the evening to hear from an Elevation sponsorship team that has completed the whole process! From preparation and waiting to a one-year in Canada celebration and as they move forward in relationship with the family, we will learn about it all!

October 1st, 2016:
Ride For Refuge was a great success! $32,310.68 was raised by our Elevation Elite team! Great job!! Looking forward to planning an impactful 2017!

 

August 2016: Our Rohingya family from Myanmar has now completed their 1-year sponsorship 🙂 They are doing well, working and going to English classes and furthering education!
Elevation presents: Journeying with Refugees

 

An Informative Training Day
Saturday April 16th, 2016 9am-2:30pm
For more info and to register Click Here.

 

I Am Rohingya.  April 9th 2016, 7pm.
A powerful and emotional drama about life, loss, violence, and hope that chronicles the lives of ‘the most oppressed people on Earth.’ More info.

 

In 2016, a record $28,000 from the church budget will be going towards refugee initiatives!
  • $6000 to Mission partners
  • $14,000 directly to Refugee Sponsorship
  • $8000 to other Refugee Initiatives (ex. education support, cultural and heritage events, training)

Feb. 17th, 2016: This week marks the arrival of the 800th Syrian refugee to the Waterloo Region!

Dec. 5th, 2015: Elevation Craft Market gave 10% of their sales to the Refugee Sponsorship Fund! Thanks so much!

There are four priorities in our journey with refugees:

We believe in supporting the voices of refugees in our local communities, across Canada and globally. We also want to use our voice to speak up for the human rights of refugees and to encourage positive change in attitudes and policies impacting refugees.

Canada’s refugee resettlement program requires Canadian sponsorship of one sort or another. In our work sponsoring refugees from across the globe, we are part of two different sponsorship approaches: Private Sponsorship and the Blended-Visa Office Referred (BVOR) Program.

Refugees often arrive in Canada with only what they can carry. One of our priorities is making sure their immediate needs can be provided, whether by finding resources for them or matching them up with local organizations that provide assistance. The following are examples of common settlement needs:

housing
household goods
clothing
healthcare and mental health support
– English classes and conversation groups
identification/government documents

Refugees become valued members of their new communities. We are committed to developing long-term relationships with the refugees we sponsor and/or help settle, to help them integrate into their communities as people with something to offer. To this end, we walk with refugees in a number of ways, helping them find meaningful long-term employment and education opportunities, supporting them as they negotiate financial planning and purchasing a home, and simply building deeper friendships.

Refugee Sponsorship Fund – Donate

May 7, 2017. Increasing Refugee Awareness

Journeying with Refugees: An Informative Training Day April 16th, 2016.