Monday, December 01, 2008

Christmas Gifts for Refugees

Did you or your congregation give Christmas gifts last year for newly arriving refugees? Want to do it again? Or are you still hoping to stimulate the economy by adding to your holiday shopping list? There's still time!

LSS of Wisconsin Refugee program now has a list of 150 refugees who arrived this past year that we'd like to give holiday gifts to. Here's how it works:

1) Respond to this blog post indicating how many gifts you or your congregation would like to give.
2) I'll send you a list of names, gender and age, so you can go shopping.
3) Go shopping, purchasing approximately one appropriate gift per person. Good gifts include Target gift cards, clothes, and winter jackets. Estimate sizes of clothing based on age. When in doubt, consider gift cards...
4) Collect all your gifts, and mail or deliver them to East Koshkonong Lutheran Church no later than December 21st. Wrap all gifts and label them with the name of the recipient.

Staffers from LSS of Wisconsin will stop by here on December 23rd to pick up all the gifts, and then they will hold a holiday party for the refugee families in early January.

If you have any questions about specific families or the refugee program, you can contact Rebekah Johnson, 414-325-3098

Last year we also collected material donations, like used furniture, clothing, and household items. We will need these kinds of donations very soon, because the refugee resettlement program is coming to Madison. Refugees will likely be resettled directly in the Madison area starting in 2009. So for the time being, rather than donating your gently used items right now, please consider storing them at your house or at church, and we will definitely welcome and need them when resettlement opens in Madison.

Blessings in this Advent season as we live lives of hope and grace in Christ,

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