Denver Pres has been focused on serving the refugee community for five years and we have partnered with Project Worthmore for two of those. Since this is such a large part of our church's formal Compassion & Justice ministry, I want to let you know about ways that you can support the refugee community.
The recent outpouring of support for refugees from the Denver Pres and surrounding communities, has been incredible. Local refugee agencies have also had a significant influx of volunteers and community members wanting to engage. Though our official partner is Project Worthmore, Denver Pres has connections with several other refugee organizations.
To help coordinate efforts and lighten the load for local organizations, I have compiled a comprehensive list of needs of the refugee organizations to which we are connected.
HERE ARE ways you can support the refugee community:
1) Monthly Denver Pres Supply Drives
2) Follow and attend events
3) Engage with agencies in other ways
1. MONTHLY SUPPLY DRIVES
On the last Sunday of each month from February through May, Denver Pres will organize different supply drives to raise donated goods for Project Worthmore and other refugee agencies. Supplies can be dropped off in the main lobby of Smiley Middle School (2540 Holly St, Denver) from 10am-12pm on the last Sunday of every month.
Sunday, February 26 - Welcome Baskets
Because of the generosity of the Denver Pres, Park Hill, and Stapleton communities, we have fully stocked Project Worthmore with enough coats for the rest of the season! So in February we will be collecting welcome basket supplies instead of coats.
These practical supplies are given to refugees who have either just arrived or who have been here for a while and just need a little extra help.
Welcome Basket Supply List
- White Rice (25 lb. or 50 lb. bag)
- Rice cooker (Costco - $30)
- Laundry basket
- Laundry soap
- Dish soap
- Trash bags
- All-purpose house cleaner
- Bath soap
- Shampoo & Conditioner
- Deodorant (men and women)
- Toothpaste (children and adult)
- Toothbrushes (children and adult)
- Toilet paper
- Broom and dust pan
- Hand soap
- Feminine products
- Vacuum cleaner
Sunday March 26 - Welcome Notes
Welcome notes for refugees
Write a welcoming note to refugees to let them know we are glad they are here. These will be given out to refugees that come through Project Worthmore’s office. This is a great activity for kids to participate – draw a picture and write a message! (Please be considerate that refugees come from various faith backgrounds.)
- Welcome to Denver!
- Welcome to the United States!
- We are so glad you are here!
- We love you and care about you.
Sunday, April 23 - Cleaning Supplies
Help support single refugee parents at African Community Center (ACC), one of Denver's refugee resettlement agencies, by providing cleaning supplies.
ACC is putting on a class for refugee clients to teach them how to properly care for their apartments to keep pests away and to prevent incurring maintenance charges. The program would like to offer free cleaning supplies to class attendees.
If you would like to support this effort, you can donate a complete kit or individual items.
Cleaning Supply Kits
- Garbage bags
- Paper towels
- Hand-held scrub brush
- Glass/Window cleaner
- Multi-surface bathroom cleaner (like Clorox or Lysol)
- Floor cleaner
- Dish soap
- Dish towels
- Plastic wrap
- Welcome note
- Vacuums (new or used in good working condition)
Sunday, May 28 - School Supplies
School supplies for refugee children
School supplies will be given to our refugee friends at African Community Center, one of the refugee resettlement agencies in Denver.
- Glue Sticks
2. FOLLOW AND ATTEND EVENTS
Many organizations are leading events that celebrate the refugee community. To stay up-to-date with events happening in the refugee community, follow this Facebook page that's being managed by a cohort of refugee agencies: https://www.facebook.com/COWelcomesRefugees/
Dignity Festival, Saturday, June 17
Join us for a day of fitness and community in celebration of World Refugee Day to welcome our refugee neighbors! Join us as a participant or volunteer at this fun, family-friendly event! There will be yoga, 5k, 1 mile fun run, rice haul relay, face painting, food, and other activities at Delaney Community Farm in Aurora.
3. SUPPORT REFUGEE AGENCIES WITH YOUR TIME AND RESOURCES
- Monthly donations to Project Worthmore
- One of the biggest needs Project Worthmore has in light of the recent refugee policy changes is more monthly donors which will allow them to focus their efforts on helping the refugee community.
- To make a donation: https://www.projectworthmore.org/donate/
- Amazon Smile
- An easy way to support Project Worthmore while making your routine Amazon purchases.
- Amazon will donate 0.5% of the amount of eligible purchases toward PWM for no additional cost to the buyer.
- Here’s how:
- Start at smile.amazon.com (you must start here to be able to support a non-profit)
- Type in "Project Worthmore" in the “Pick Your Own Charity” box
- Select Project Worthmore
- Buy Pizza EVERY Sunday
- Oblios Pizzeria is giving 20% of all proceeds to Project Worthmore EVERY SUNDAY from 5-9pm. Dine in or take out. 6115 E 22nd Ave, Denver 80207
- Buy a Share at Delaney Community Farm and Support Refugees
- Project Worthmore is getting a farm! Delaney Community Farm is a collaborative partnership between Denver Urban Gardens and Project Worthmore. This 5-acre training farm in Aurora provides refugees access to farming, healthful food, and community.
- You can support Project Worthmore through buying a farm share and enjoying a season of fresh produce while supporting the refugee training farm.
- There are 16 farm shares left for this summer season; they are $650 each.
- More information and sign up here: https://www.projectworthmore.org/programs/delaneyfarm/
Street Fraternity is a place of brotherhood and personal growth for urban young men. Their mission is creating a consistently safe space and place for refugee, immigrant, and local urban young men to build community, trust, relationships, and a sense of belonging as they work toward acculturating to the values and beliefs of the United States and their own coming-of-age issues. Street Fraternity is located at 8720 E. Colfax Ave., #100, Denver.
Ways to Get Involved:
- Hang Out
- Volunteer once a week to mentor, help with homework or job applications, or just be available to the young men. Street Fraternity is open Monday-Thursday, 4-9pm.
- Our drop-in/walk in culture is best fit for those able to have patience in a chaotic space, spend lots of time listening, sharing, and questioning, building relationships and trust, and those comfortable being in a space where very often there's violence in the neighborhood as well as engaging with young men having had or currently experiencing violence, substance abuse, failing or very interrupted education, etc.
- Donate online to help Street Fraternity continue to create a welcoming and safe space for young men from refugee and immigrant families. Street Fraternity heavily relies on general operating dollars from private donors. General operating donations allow Street Fraternity to work toward their mission and assists them with things rent, food, insurance, internet, and maintenance/equipment, and salary for one paid staff.
- Prepare or serve a meal in the evening.
- Buy, prepare, and cook meals at Street Fraternity anytime between 4-6pm (or after if those times don't work). Or you can order catered food. Or if you have no ability to buy food, come in and help Street Fraternity prepare whatever food they may be making for the evening.
- Share your expertise by joining the Street Fraternity board or a committee.
- Board members agree to a two-year term and can elect to stay on thereafter.
Want to Get Involved? Email Karen Berry (email@example.com).
There are many ways that you can get involved at African Community Center (ACC). Their office is located at 5250 Leetsdale Drive, Suite 200, Denver. Their office hours are Monday-Friday, 9-5.
For a complete listing of ways you can support ACC, GO HERE.
Involve Kids - Have your child make a “Welcome to the United States” card for newcomer families and mail or deliver them to ACC’s office.
- Have your child lead a coin drive at their school to raise money for ACC
- Have your child lead a school supply/toiletries drive at their school
Inspire Your Company - Companies often offer “matching programs” for donations you make to the charities you love. ACC also offers volunteer activities for corporations. Please connect ACC to your company if you think they might be interested in volunteering or corporate sponsorships.
Celebrate - ACC holds many events throughout the year. Visit our events page often!
Volunteer - Sign up for periodic volunteering, ongoing help, or an internship.
Donate - The easiest way to make an impact is to invest in refugee services. Start with a $10/month investment today. DONATE
Shop - ACC’s We Made This social enterprise teaches refugees the art of sewing and unlocks the potential for economic self-sufficiency. Shop at ACC’s office or at www.wemadethis.com.
Collect - ACC collects and provides basic care items and other things to those refugees who need them. Please check the donate section of their website for the most up-to-date list of needs. You can deliver items to their office.
The following items are currently needed:
- Items for the "We Made This" Program:
- Home sewing machine
- Knit fabric (white jersey, preferably)
- 3 ring binders
- Dress Forms
- Tea/Refreshments for Tea-Time
- Construction paper/Colored paper
- Pattern-making paper
- Elmer's Glue
- Plain cotton fabric
- Bus Passes
- Industrial Sewing Machine