Palestinian family to move to Comox Valley

The paperwork has been sent off and the Abo-Nofal family are waiting to come to the Comox Valley.

The paperwork has been sent off and the Abo-Nofal family are waiting to come to the Comox Valley.

In the next two or three months, Ali, Laila, Reem, Mariam and Rana will leave the Al Hol refugee camp in northern Syria and fly out of Damascus to the Comox Valley.

The Comox Valley Refugee Support Committee will meet Oct. 5 at 7 p.m. at Comox United Church.

The Abo-Nofals are a Palestinian family who had to flee persecution and violence in Iraq and have no citizenship, even though they spent their lives in Iraq. They have spent the past four years living in a United Nations camp and along with other families have been invited by Immigration Canada to come to Canada.

The Comox United Church’s refugee support committee is responsible for the financial and social needs of the family for one year. It is important that they be given the opportunity to settle in and  learn English.

If you  would like to learn more about the  family’s history, you can go online to Al Hol refugee camp, Syria or a YouTube 23-minute video done by Al Jazeera on a family who was settled in Vancouver. On Google put in al jazeera, witness, youtube, far from home, Tayem family.

“I am encouraged by the phone calls I have received during the last two weeks,” says Dave Talbot of the refugee support committee. “A children’s Me To We Global Justice group would like to fundraise for the three girls. We are receiving furniture, household items, toys and children’s books and even the offer of weekly music lessons!”

The committee is looking for a three-bedroom home, townhouse or apartment in the Courtenay Elementary area. It would appreciate hearing from someone who could provide an interim dry storage facility, such as a large garage or a storage locker.

Translators are also necessary and the committee would be happy to hear from anyone in the Comox Valley who speaks Arabic.

The greatest need is financial. The committee hopes to raise $30,000 to support the family for a year.

All donations are eligible for income tax receipts. Make cheques out to Comox United Church with Refugee Fund on the memo line and send to Comox United Church , 250 Beach Dr., Comox, B.C. V9M 1P9.

Phone Dave at 250-339-4975 or 250-218-7874 for more information.

— Comox Valley Refugee Support Committee

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