Highland Sponsors Refugee Family

Formal Relationship with Nyirankamiye Family Coming to a Close

Highland members have poured Love upon our new friends from the Congo over the last few months, but our co-sponsorship of Odetta’s family is coming to a close. Sponsorships through Kentucky Refugee Ministries (KRM) traditionally last three months. The Nyirankamiyes arrived on August 31, 2016. Highland put in extra time with this family who arrived with more challenging circumstances than most.

While Highland members will continue to provide friendship and occasional support, at this time our Love will change forms to allow this family to become more independent and find their own way. KRM will continue their involvement, as they offer agency support to families for up to five years, depending on need.

Last week, two members of the refugee resettlement team met with the family and KRM staff to celebrate the family’s accomplishments and our changing relationship from mentorship to friendship. The meeting was positive and the family is excited to continue their adventure in Louisville.

Over the last five months, Highland and the Nyirankamiyes have accomplished much together! The older children are enrolled in school, and the younger kids attend English classes alongside Mom here at Highland through KRM. In November, Highland members helped older sister Dorika welcome her baby into the world. For more than a week after Dorika was discharged from the hospital and the baby was in infant intensive care, Highland members daily drove Dorika to the hospital and back so that she could nurse and begin learning to take care of her baby. Odetta can successfully use the bus to get to her daily classes. She has learned to wash the family’s clothes in a washing machine donated and installed by Highland members. Odetta said that she is most proud of learning how to cook on a stove to provide meals for her family.

The resettlement team is so proud of our new friends. We are anxious about stepping back, but we know it is what is best for the family as they garner more self-sufficiency. The family will be in our thoughts as we worry if they have successfully navigated their bus routes, conquered American banking, or are flourishing at their places of employment. Continue to pray with us for our dear friends. If you feel called to give in more tangible ways, KRM is looking for an employment mentor for Odetta and a cultural mentor for Dorika. If you would like more information about these volunteer opportunities, contact Lauren Jones Mayfield or KRM’s Hannah Touchton.

For information on Congolese refugees, click here.