Chin Refugee Ministry Newsletter from Lewisville, Texas.
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New ShoesBack to School 
FBC Lewisville-style

Newsletter: September 2013

First Baptist Church Lewisville has about 20 American families who mentor Chin families. These families know first hand how hard it is for the Chin to navigate American systems.

Since the goal of mentoring is to equip Chin families to navigate the systems themselves, FBC Lewisville put their Back to School emphasis on supporting their family mentors. Under the leadership of Jimmy Bryan, Missions Pastor, and Laura Hanson, Chin Refugee Ministry Family Mentoring Coordinator, FBC Lewsville members donated nearly $2500 to help Chin families purchase the very specific shirts, pants, and shoes required by their schools. 

Both the Christian Life Ministry team, chaired by Pat Coatney, and the FBC Women's Ministry, organized by Jan Corbin, had events to collect money and gift cards which were given to the family mentors. In addition to the gift cards that were donated, fifty 20% off Kohl's coupons were given anonymously for the Chin back to school effort.

The mentors then were able to take their families shopping and show them what they had to have, where to purchase it, and how to purchase it. 
Chin Refugee Ministry and the Chin families who are so fortunate to have mentors and CRM would like to thank the entire church at FBC Lewisville for their time, financial support and energy in helping Chin families get ready for school.

Thank You Heavenly Supply Depot
for School Supplies

College BoundThe entire American emphasis on school supplies is so foreign to the Chin, as well as, a very expensive endeavor for families who live on tight budgets with barely enough to eat and pay rent. 

But thanks to Heavenly Supply Depot and their volunteers and supporters, over 400 Chin LISD students have backpacks and school supplies to start off the new school year. Heavenly Supply Depot coordinated a Back to School event just for the Chin students on August 14th.

Vendors such as WIC, LISD Child Nutrition Services, and Walmart Vision Center provided information about their programs to Chin parents. Young adults from Bethel Chin Baptist Church and other Chin churches provided translation services.  The youth department from First Baptist Lewisville had face-painting and other activities for the children. 

On behalf of the Chin community, thank you.

Sewing Machines

For the past year, the Theolophilites Sunday School class from First Methodist Church Lewisivlle has been collecting used sewing machines that were in working order. 

At the Back to School event, a drawing was held to give away the sewing machines which are highly prized by the Chin.

Thank you Sandra Brown and Janet Peavler.


New Shoes for School

Karen McFarland’s small group from The Village Church got up very early Sunday August 4th to help 100 Chin students pick out new shoes at the Payless Shoe Store on Main Street in Lewisville.

Community in Schools campus representatives Julie Redus and Shelby Griffith provided transportation and coordination and CRM provided translation, as well.

Karen’s small group measured the student's feet and helped them shop and the generous donations from The Village Church members paid the expense.

The kids provided the smiles of delight as they shed the shoes that were either too big or too small for them and received brand new shoes that fit just right. 

Thank you to all who volunteered.

Becky NelsonA Note from Our Director

For the past 3 years, Rochelle Webb has coordinated a summer reading program for 2nd through 5th grade Chin students at the CRM offices at Basswood Manor.  This year the program ran for 8 weeks, with 35 students who came consistently twice a week. On average, the kids were able to read out loud to a volunteer for about 40 minutes at each session. 

Volunteers from Rochelle’s Precept Bible Study at Crossroads Bible Church, CRM staff, and volunteers from Hebron Honor Society participated.  From time to time during each student's reading, the volunteers would pause to ask them comprehension questions to ensuresure the kids understood what they were reading.

The program ended with an interactive story of the Good Samaritan, pizza, and custom made ice cream sundaes.  The kids got to choose 2 books to take home. Due to the high demand of children’s story Bibles that we had, we are planning on getting more of them for next year.
I asked Rochelle to describe what she has seen over the past 3 years:

“About 15 kids or so have been with us all 3 summers. Their growth has been amazing and they all have their favorite volunteer who they like to read with, so friends have been made. Some of the kids came into our program as non-readers and now they are reading well. Others came into the program hating to read but wanting the chance to earn a prize and somewhere along the line they became book lovers. It was encouraging to me to watch them searching in our bookcase for a book in their favorite series. Another encouraging sign was when they were waiting for their turn to read (we always had many more kids than volunteers) and I would see them silently reading to themselves or helping a younger child read. Even this year, we saw a marked improvement in their reading abilities and English over the course of the summer.”

Becky Nelson
Director, Chin Refugee Ministry
(972)  221-3249

Upcoming Events: 

CRM Leadership Meeting
September 17, 2013 at 7:00 at Chin Refugee Ministry Offices, 1020 Fox Avenue, Apt 504, Lewisivlle TX. 

Visitor Parking behind Building 5 and in front of office. Anyone interested in discussing the direction that CRM should head for the next 3 years is welcome to come.
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