Interest building to bring Syrian Refugee family to Petrolia

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Heather Wright

The Independent

Leah Butler and Bea Vasey have been watching the plight of Syrians fleeing from their homes and now they want to do something to help.

They were among the people at Christ Church in Petrolia on Monday to begin to figure out what they can do to help a Syrian Refugee family settle here.

The Lambton Anglican Refugee Committee is one of the many community groups trying to bring Syrian refugees to Canada. The federal government wants to settle 10,000 people here before February from the millions of people who have left the war-torn country.

Petrolia resident Sylvia Fairbank is working with the Lambton committee which hopes to bring two families to the area, one of whom could settle in Petrolia if there is enough volunteer help. Fairbank says about 20 to 25 people will be needed to help run errands and find housing among other things.

When the doors to the church opened, more than a dozen people were already there to talk about what could be done. Vasey and Butler were among the crowd. “I feel like I want to help,” says Vasey. “I’m totally in support of refugees coming to Canada.”

Butler agrees saying she has always been interested in the Middle East and she would love to help ease the pain of some of the people there. “I can help with whatever they need… This is a whole new culture, all new ways for them and they’re leaving their country and parts of their family behind. They don’t have anything.”

Rev. Kim Metelka  who is part of the organizing committee says finances are just now starting to flow in. The committee needs about $34,000 to sponsor two families. Donations can be dropped off at Christ Church.

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