Friday, September 8, 2017

Our Latest Refugee Family!

Florentine and Tchadrak are our latest addition to the refugee resettlement project and we are helping them acclimate to American life. We don’t know much about their background, here is what we do know:

 Florentine speaks French and is originally from Rwanda. Tchadrak speaks French and Swahili and is  from the Congo. They came to the United States six weeks ago with the help of the Ethiopian Community Association of Chicago. They live in a very small studio apartment in Rogers Park. Florentine was a school teacher for 8-10 year olds, Tchadrak owned a “mini market”, selling milk and groceries. They attend English classes at the Ethiopian Community Center and, this week, started working at the United Club Lounge at the airport. 

We are helping them improve their English skills, we have provided clothing and bedding for them, taken them to the grocery store and introduced them to American foods. We will help them learn computer skills using the computers at the local library branch.

They need a twin size air mattress and a set of twin size sheets.

Monday, August 28, 2017

From the Congo to Chicaog all via the Computer!

With much delight, Makanja applied for and received a Chicago library card today. He was so pleased as he realizes it will open some doorways for him. His first request was to learn to use a computer. 

Although he found the "mouse" a bit tricky at first, he soon caught on. We roamed the internet. We saw photos of the Tanzanian Refugee Camp where he lived and through the photos, he explained the camp to us. We saw the Congolese village of his birth. It is beautiful; the terrain is amazing, it's both hilly and flat. He showed us the lake that the Congolese need to cross over to escape to Tanzania when there is a war.  He found a photo of one of his paternal uncles and a cousin who still live in "Fizzi Town", in the Congo. 

We're not sure what moved Makanja more today, for once, being our teacher or seeing his birth country and the refugee camp he only left only 4 months ago.

When we asked, he told us that he misses the many people that he left behind, but he is so proud to be in America and hopes his remaining family will also be able to come.

Jackie and Gary Cohen

Friday, August 25, 2017

Our Refugee Family: Read about here!

It has been a busy summer for Agnes, George, Daniel and Jennie.

George attended ETHS summer school for six weeks and then participated in the Y Achievers Program through the McGraw YMCA Evanston. The program provides tutors from Northwestern University, social worker interns from the University of Chicago and community volunteers to a ensure successful high school and continuing academic or vocational education. George is entering ETHS this fall as a sophomore.
Jennie, Daniel and George

Daniel and Jennie attended summer school at Nichols Middle School Evanston and, in the afternoon, attended a free summer day camp where they went on weekly field trips. They auditioned for the Evanston Children’s Choir, they will begin rehearsals in the fall. Daniel will enter 8th grade and Jennie will enter 6th.

Agnes continues her work in housekeeping at Evanston Hospital in the afternoon/evening shift. We are working to get her changed to the morning shift so that she can be with the children in the evening. Agnes completed the paperwork required to obtain a green card and we took them to be fingerprinted. Agnes should receive her green card in a few months.
Agnes and her family!
Agnes and her family celebrated their first 4th of July fireworks … a joyful celebration for them. We took them on field trips to swimming pools and Six Flags. They went to a dentist and an optometrist. George and Jennie were fitted with glasses. We had their bikes repaired and bought them new backpacks and school supplies. Their backpacks are packed and they are excited for their first day of school!

Occasionally we needs supplies for our family so check back here to see what they may need. Can't wait to see what the year brings

Susan Gottlieb on behalf of the Lakeside Social Action committee

Our Latest Refugee Family!

Florentine and Tchadrak are our latest addition to the refugee resettlement project and we are helping them acclimate to American life....