September 2020
Global Friends Coalition: Educate, Embrace, Empower
We took this opportunity to create a "Welcome from Sertoma Park in Grand Forks, North Dakota" photo for Welcoming America's Welcome Week and to show off the globes that were decorated by mostly Red River High School seniors who graduated in May 2020. Due to the pandemic, our annual Senior Day of Art was postponed until August. Local artist, Jamie Sebby was the inspiration behind the globes. 

Welcoming Week is Almost Here

Dear <<First Name>>,

It's September and this year, we are planning something new for Welcoming America's Welcoming Week: our first ever Global Friends Coalition VIRTUAL COMMUNITY PICNIC! Join us on Sunday, September 20th at 5:00 p.m. on our Facebook and Youtube pages. (As many of our supporters were asking, we do have this figured out this month so it will be on Youtube.)

Are you interested in learning how to make a Nepali dish? We have asked Binod Kharel and Laxmi Dhimal, managers of Hamro Bazar  to show us how to create a popular dish. We will be featuring them in a cooking demonstration. We will provide you with a list of ingredients and where to buy them if you want to try it yourself at home if you register ahead (it's free!). Additionally, we are featuring some special surprises to make this event meaningful. So, plan to attend--or watch the recording later!

Recently, I received a note from two of our supporters, asking how New Americans are faring during COVID-19. We are hearing that some New Americans are having to quarantine due to potential exposure at work or in the community, which is especially challenging given that living arrangements can often be tight. The hardest thing I am seeing is the dip in employment. In areas such as hospitality, hours have been reduced due to a lower demand. This makes it hard to budget when you don't know exactly how long you are working every day.

With rates of COVID-19 spiking in Grand Forks, we are trying new approaches. We have a fairly robust number of volunteers who want to get involved so we are coming up with new ways to interact, thanks to technology. We simply need to be more creative.

I hope you are keeping safe and healthy. 
Reach out if you have ideas as to how we can better serve our community or if you'd like to get involved.  And, please give our virtual Community Picnic a try! I think it's going to be fun! The best way to contact us is to either call  701-330-0765 or email  Your continued support provides us hope. Through your gifts and support, you make a difference. 

In friendship,

Cynthia H. Shabb
Executive Director
Global Friends Events & Activities

14th Annual Global Friends Community Picnic
Sunday, September 20th
5 - 6 PM

Pre-register here to receive the recipe and prep information for the cooking demonstration ahead of time.
Join us for our 14th annual Community Picnic. We'll be hosting the event virtually this year, streaming on our Facebook and Youtube pages. You'll see a cooking demonstration from Laxmi Dhimal and Binod Kharel, the managers of Hamro Bazar, and more!

Global Friends Beginner & Advanced US Citizenship Class

Call 701-330-0765 if you want to participate in these citizenship classes over the Zoom app. You must be able to access the internet to participate in either class. For the advanced class, you must be able to read, write, and speak English. This class moves quickly. 

Looking for Individual Instruction or Know Someone Who Is? 
We have volunteers who are ready to help with remote English instruction. We will work with both students and volunteers to find a time that works. Email or call 701-330-0765 to get connected.
Community Events
With school in session, the Grand Forks Public School's website has a resource page to answer any covid-19 and restart related questions. Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns and we will pass them along, or talk if your child's school principal.

Food Distribution
The Great Plains Food Bank bi-weekly distribution is awaiting word on federal funding and has paused. The following organizations has food available for families in need. Please either call one of the numbers below or reach out to us and we will help you get connected.

Hope Church Community Care Center: 701-757-3480
East Grand Forks Food Shelf: 218-773-8083
Grand Forks Salvation Army: 701-775-2597
Northlands Rescue Mission: 701-772-6600
Red River Valley Community Action: 701-746-5431
St. Joseph's Social Care: 701-795-8614

North Dakota Rent Bridge
North Dakota has a program to help keep people in their apartments and homes during the pandemic. If you're facing a financial hardship and have trouble making rent, please reach out to us or visit for more information.

Grand Forks Public Library
Virtual Storytime (Pre-K and Up)

Join the GF Public Library staff on Zoom and Facebook Live for stories on Tuesdays at 10am! Please email to get the login, password & be added to the email reminder list!

Curbside Pickup
The library is closed to the public but will offer curbside pickup for any books and other materials available for check out. More information on procedures to come go to for more information.

Grand Forks Park District
Scholarship Program
If a child qualifies for free or reduced lunch at school, they qualify for reduced fees for GF Park District programs. Request a Youth Scholarship and you can receive 50% off the Park District programs and 75% off the Choice H&F programs and membership. Please reach out to us by emailing  or calling 701-330-0765 and click here for more information
Community Resources
Grand Forks Community Support Facebook Group
This group brings together state and local news and resources every hour. They also answer questions and help coordinate assistance for families in need of supplies.

Grand Forks Food Pantry, Grocery, and Restaurant Resources
Lists food pantries and their hours and procedures for families in need of food assistance. It also lists the new hours for grocery stores, as well as hours and procedures for restaurants operating delivery or curbside pickup.

Grand Forks Housing Authority
Housing is now accepting change of income reporting online, so if you have a Section 8 voucher, or you live in a Housing Authority property, and you've been laid off or have had your hours reduced, report the change to your caseworker right away for immediate relief.

High Plains Fair Housing
If you believe you're being treated unfairly and having your rights violated by your landlord, reach out to High Plains Fair Housing for assistance.

Firstlink / 2-1-1
Firstlink operates a community resource/crisis hotline. If you call 2-1-1, you can ask questions about where to find certain items, hours for stores or community resources, or just about anything. They are also trained crisis operators, so you if are feeling thoughts of suicide or just need someone to talk to, all people who answer the phone are trained to help.
Red River HS Senior Day of Art
Global Friends provides funding for youth activities, with special thanks to the Solomon-David Schill Memorial Fund.  If you'd like to donate to youth activities, please click here. Thanks to these funds, students were able to work with local artist, Jamie Sebby to create these globes that will be auctioned off at a later time.
Census Takers will be Knocking on Doors
You are required by federal law to complete Census Forms.
Your response informs how much money our community receives from the federal government for critical programs like Head Start and Medicaid.

he 2020 Census is here and now is the time to respond!

By responding to the 2020 Census, you can help bring in billions of federal dollars and shape the future of your community. It’s simple, easy, and secure. You can complete your questionnaire three different ways: online at, by phone at 844.330.2020, or by mail.

To learn about the Census and how it affects our communities, visit 2020CENSUS.GOV
Copyright © 2020 Global Friends Coalition, All rights reserved.

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