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October 2017 News & Highlights 

Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!

This month a group of Afghan women from our Women’s Wellness program took an outing to the Sacramento Zoo for a day of wild animals, bonding, and fun. The trip was a special treat for the group and a chance to get out into the greater Sacramento community and explore some of the fun things that their new home city has to offer. Life as a new immigrant can be filled with lots of strict schedules--doctor’s appointments, working toward citizenship, appointments, navigating new systems, and did we mention appointments? It can be hard for our clients to find the time to play and relax. Visiting the Sacramento Zoo was an awesome way to introduce the ladies of this group to one of the interesting, entertaining things Sacramento has to offer!
 
Going to the Zoo was the unanimous vote by all of the women in the group when offered options of a few different activities in the area. The Sacramento Zoo was kind enough to donate tickets--and not just any tickets! The ladies were given a special pass to go and feed the giraffes in a cool, up-close-encounter that everyone loved. All of the women were excited about the chance to “see wild animals,” as going to a zoo is not something they had the opportunity to do in their home country. It was a great experience getting to show them something to love about their new home.
 
In addition to the giraffes, some of the other highlights of the trip were the lions, the flamingos, and the chimpanzees. The only disappointment of the day was the Red Panda--a google search will show you what the group learned in person, that the Red Panda doesn’t look like a regular Panda at all! But the rest of the animals more than made up for that, and everyone got to chat about their favorites over a picnic lunch in the afternoon. One favorite that everyone shared wasn’t one that a native Californian would probably have taken much notice of--a certain bird with blue colored plumage caught everyone’s eye because the hue reminded them all of a specific color frequently used in Afghan textiles, reminding them all of home.
 
Overall the day was a wonderful experience for everyone who participated. The women all agreed they would love to bring their families back for another visit, so that they could share the fun experience. For the IRC in Sacramento, leaving them each with a deeper connection and affection for their new home was the best success we could have asked for!

Halloween Fright:
No longer afraid

Halloween can be a scary time for all of us, but especially if you're new to the United States and aren't familiar with the customs and decorations that surround it!  During October we hosted a Vocational ESL convocation to educate new arrivals about the "decorations" they would see. Sharing about US culture and customs helped clients understand their surroundings and successfully engage in this new setting. In our Mommy & Me ESL classes we also hosted a themed craft time with pumpkin painting & festive activities. 

Sacramento is the #1 site for the resettlement of refugees and for those who previously worked with the United States military in Afghanistan & Iraq! 


 

English Learner to Successful Entrepreneur

Moving from Iraq to Sacramento meant going from teacher to student for a recent arrival. Similar to many female refugees,she began life here with no English proficiency. She recognized ESL classes would be an important part of her resettlement process and eagerly attended classes! By the end of her two years with IRC, not only had she learned enough English to confidently get around town--she even started her own childcare business! She is engaging with the community and giving back to it while supporting herself through financial independence at the same time!  We are so proud of her resilience, hard work, and courage! 

Staff Spotlight: David

David is the Casework Supervisor at the IRC in Sacramento. Refugee resettlement is important to David because he believes refugees are incredible and courageous individuals who positively impact our communities and countries. They are courageous people with real stories whose work ethic, cultural richness, love for America and dedication to building a new life are inspiring. 

The Rohingya Refugee Crises 

The International Rescue Committee aid workers on the ground in Myanmar and Bangladesh are scaling up our response to the world's fastest-growing humanitarian crisis. Click here for a look at the Rohingya refugee crisis by the numbers & how the IRC is providing life-saving support.

Get Involved: How to help this month

BUY Knitting needles & yarn! Refugee women want to start knitting groups and are in need of knitting needs & yarn in lighter shades of blue, purple, pink, and red. You can drop off donations at 2020 Hurley Way, Suite 420 in Sacramento. 
ATTEND Save the Date: Wednesday, Dec 6th!  We will be celebrating our volunteers & interns during the annual Winter Appreciation Party.  All who have volunteered during 2017 are welcome to attend! Email invitations to follow! 
VOLUNTEER  
Help refugees save thousands on their taxes this year by becoming a trained and certified VITA volunteer
. Email VolunteerSacramento@Rescue.org for more information.
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International Rescue Committee · 2020 Hurley Way, Ste 420 · Sacramento, CA 95825 · USA

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