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Chin Refugee Ministry Newsletter from Lewisville, Texas.
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Thank You, Quilt Country

Newsletter: March 2013

Quilt CountrySince 1995, Sandy Brawner, the owner of Quilt Country, has not only provided a wonderful environment for her customers, but has also found multiple ways to reach out to the community. Using her store, Brawner encourages her customers to take part in various service projects including food drives for the Salvation Army and making clothing for African children.
 
Quilt Country offers great deals, but in order for them to receive them, customers must participate in the store’s current initiative. For example, during the food drive they must bring in canned goods in exchange for the discount.

“Customers are pretty amazing really,” Brawner says referring to involvement with donations.
 
Her desire to bless the community includes Chin Refugee Ministry. CRM is currently collecting clothes and Brawner has offered her store as the drop-off location. The store is open every day from 10:00- 5:00 except for Sundays when it is open from 1:00-5:00. Drop-offs can be made anytime during those hours at 701 S. Stemmons Fwy #90, Lewisville, Texas, 75067. Quilt Country does not provide labor for pickup/drop off.  If you need furniture pick-up, please contact troybishop@yahoo.com or bubbacx@yahoo.com
 
For a list of items Chin Refugee Ministry is accepting for donation, please visit: www.lewisvillechin.org/donate
 
Brawner and her staff are glad to answer any questions and truly hope this plan benefits the Chin Ministry, the people who need to drop off furniture and clothing, and those who will be receiving it.  

Becky HeadshotA Note from Our Director

We're Moving!

No, we’re not moving out of Basswood....but thanks to the generosity of Sandy Brawner of Quilt Country, Chin Refugee Ministry is consolidating our furniture and clothing ministry to her warehouse.

We are also “moving” our organization to meet the newer needs of the Chin community.  From the beginning, we had as a platform for service the 3 E’s:  Establish, Equip, Engage.  By necessity, our focus and resources were spent primarily on Establish, as newcomer refugees flooded into our area, who needed the very basics – furniture, clothing, food, emergency rent and medical assistance.

We still have newcomers trickling in, and for the next 3 years we will continue to have newcomers until the United States closes down its Burmese resettlement program.  These newcomers will need the basics, as well.  Many in the Chin community are now financially stable enough to help their own people, but they still struggle with American systems. 

Moving forward, we are concentrating on Equipping and Engaging– which means a focus on family mentoring, school buddies and building adoption.

More of our resources are now going toward Equipping, by paying young Chin adults to translate for us as we help the Chin navigate American systems which, in turn, helps them attend community college.  We are emphasizing our family mentoring program and working to establish training so that Americans can understand the equipping needs of the Chin.  We are also working to equip the Chin youth to succeed in school, in conjunction with helping parents participate in their child’s education.

Finally, we seek continually to build relationships within the Chin community and to learn from them - that’s the Engagement piece of what we do.

In some ways, it’s a more difficult path because Equipping and Engaging takes personal commitment on the sides of both Americans and Chin.  The rewards are well worth it, as we explore what it means to be brothers and sisters in Christ.
 
B.
Becky Nelson
Director, Chin Refugee Ministry
(972)  221-3249


HandshakeCulture Corner:
   Housing in Chin State


Chin State HousingAccording to Wikipedia, in pre-industrial societies, single family housing was relatively unknown phenomenon. That is still true for Chin State, where children live with their parents until they marry, at which point they move in with the husband’s parents. Chin grandparents help raise the children, and the middle generation cares for the aging parents.

Being forced to leave their country has greatly disrupted this tradition for the Chin people. One of the most difficult adjustments the older Chin students have to face is the “loss” of their grandparents, who they had to leave behind. The Chin “middle generation” strive to send money home to their aging parents, as well as, support their children here in the United States.
 
A primary motivation for the Chin to obtain U.S. Citizenship is to be able to travel safely back to Burma and see their parents before they perish.
Visit our redesigned website: lewisvillechin.org
Upcoming Events:

Online:

Lillie Jackson Pre-K enrollment for next year. Details to come on how to best help Chin parents enroll.  

March 18 - 22: 
Enrollment cards for next school year will be coming home in backpacks for all students at Lakeland Elementary.  Mentors, please check backpacks or have parents come to CRM office for assistance in filling out the forms.  

March 19: 
Chin Clinic Day at Denton County Health Department: CRM is providing translators

March 23:  
Chin Refugee Health Fair.  Free testing for blood pressure, diabetes, cholesterol.  Sponsored by Catholic Charities of Ft. Worth and UNT Health Science Center.  CRM is helping to provide translators.  Lakeland Elementary School, 10 am to 1 pm.  
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