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Ways to Help Asylum Seekers

June 14, 2019

Here's how you can help:

There are two organizations that house and support asylum seekers when there is an overflow at the shelters which is currently happening: Greater Portland Family Promise and Hope Acts

Greater Portland Family Promise works with asylum seeker families.

Greater Portland Family Promise house asylum seekers with families and provides English Language Lab, transportation for work, school, medical appointments and social work needs. There are 800 volunteers and 30 religious churches and synagogues who are housing families.

Here's what you can do: 

Give money

Volunteer 

Encourage your church or synagogue or mosque to be a sponsoring host.

Hope Acts works with single asylum seekers.

Hope Acts house single asylum seekers, provides English Language Lab, transportation for work, school, medical appointments and social work needs. They have numerous volunteers who assist with language integration, basic needs and companionship.

Here's what you can do: 

Give money

Volunteer

For more information and donation links click on the addresses below.

https://greaterportlandfamilypromise.org/

https://hopeacts.org/

There two organizations in the Portland area that provide basic supplies such as clothing, furniture, housewares etc.… Neighbors In Need and Furniture Friends

Neighbors In Need is an organic organization of 1200 people who donate goods to people in need, in particular asylum seekers. Masey Kaplan organizes the website and connects requests with inventory.

Here's what you can do: 

Give money

Volunteer 

Encourage your church or synagogue or mosque or community organization to be listed as a donation site or do a donation drive for Neighbors In Need.

Furniture Friends provides basic household furniture and houseware once asylum seekers find an apartment building. Many come to Maine with nothing but a suitcase.

Here's what you can do: 

Give money

Volunteer 

Encourage your church or synagogue or mosque or community organization to be listed as a donation site or do a donation drive for Furniture Friends.

For more information and donation links click on the addresses below.

Neighbors In Need 

https://www.neighborsinneedmaine.org/

Furniture Friends 

http://furniturefriends.org/

Lastly there are three critical organizations that do the intake, protect and process asylum seekers during this emergency and non-emergency: ILAP, Catholic Charities and the City of Portland Community Support Fund. They are listed in the Portland Press Herald article. Without these organizations, we couldn’t house them at the EXPO, help people apply for asylum and for work authorization. The Portland Community Support Fund provides gap funding for GA but what all these organizations are showing is that this is a state problem and opportunity. Please contact your local legislators to reinstate GA funding for asylum seekers and to encourage them to create a senior advisor to the governor on immigrant issues. We need a Donna Loring type to work with immigrants in Maine and advise the governor on this and other important issues. We also need to work with the Portland City Council to create an adhoc working committee to address short, middle and long-term problems. Hopefully, the surrounding communities and Greater Portland Chamber will also participate.

Please visit Catholic Charities, ILAP and City of Portland websites to donate and for more information: 

https://www.ccmaine.org/

https://ilapmaine.org/

https://www.portlandmaine.gov/1554/Support-Asylum-Seekers

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