For her seventh birthday in January, Nyah Joyce of the Naperville Church of Christ decided to ask 50 of her friends to bring donations for World Relief instead of presents for herself. Days later, Nyah showed up at World Relief with her mom, Aleta Joyce. They had trunk full of household goods that would soon be given to newly-arrived refugees throughout DuPage County.
Little did Nyah know the number of refugees she would impact with her selfless gift.
World Relief’s Home Furnishings Ministry
Every year, World Relief DuPage/Aurora resettles approximately 500 new refugees who have fled to America with what little possessions they can carry. As a resettlement agency, World Relief provides each of these refugees with a safe and simple new home, but it would be impossible to provide such a tangible welcome without the partnership of churches and volunteers.
World Relief relies on the generous donations of gently-used furniture and Good Neighbor Kits (household goods) to give refugee families a resting place they can finally call their own. Offering both furniture pick-up services and an easy drop-off location, World Relief seeks to make the entire process as smooth as possible. Donations are stored in World Relief’s warehouse until staff receive word of an incoming family. The Donations Manger and New Arrivals Coordinator, along with volunteers and other members of the community, then set up each new home, stocking the cabinets with food, dishes and pots and pans. When a refugee family, fresh from O’Hare International Airport steps into their new home, the relief is visible.
physical needs met > employment > self-sufficiency > contributing members of society
Become a part of this chain of empowerment by giving! Though providing furniture and household goods may seem like a small effort, these essentials are truly the foundation upon which success can be built.
As with all of World Relief’s programs, the goal of the home furnishings ministry is to help new arrivals to become self-sufficient, contributing members of society. The most rewarding outcome is when a once-vulnerable person begins to pay generosity forward.
I was helped. Now I’m helping others.
Dil Darjee, a Bhutanese refugee who came to the United States in 2009 after 17 years in a refugee camp in Nepal, is one woman who has given back. When Darjee first arrived, she moved into a furnished apartment and was quickly able to get on her feet.
Through her friendship with Glen Ellyn Covenant Church member, Darren Miller, Darjee participated in a bandage-rolling event for hospitals in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. There Darjee saw pictures of the Congolese people living in conditions reminiscent of the refugee camp in Nepal. Deeply moved by the pictures, Darjee collaborated with her friends Rabika and Nanda Maya to collect clothes for the people in the Congo.
“We have been blessed here, and are glad that we got to share that blessing with other people in need,” Darjee said. “We continue to pray for the people in the Congo, and hope to help them some more in the future.”
Miller picked up their donations for transport to the Congo and was profoundly inspired by their generosity.
“My Bhutanese friends may not have significant financial resources, but they do have big hearts and an abiding faith in Jesus,” Miller said.
Take Nyah and Dil Darjee’s lead and help vulnerable people in your own neighborhoods!
Donations leave World Relief’s warehouse as fast as they come in. Last month alone, 67 refugees made DuPage and Kane Counties their home. World Relief’s warehouse is depleted, yet 30 brave new refugees are on their way here. Would you help organize your neighbors, gather your small group or mobilize friends to collect coats, furniture and Good Neighbor Kits (GNKs)?
Follow the links below to learn more!
- Coats & winter accessories: winter and spring coats of all sizes, boots, hats, gloves and scarves. Take advantage of winter coat sales!
- Furniture: beds, mattresses, dressers, kitchen tables & chairs, lamps, couches, love seats
- Good Neighbor Kit (GNKs): kitchen utensil, bedroom items, bathroom necessities, cleaning supplies, food stables