Bridge Refugee Services Receives Support From Latter-Day Saint Charities

Tuesday, July 16, 2019 - by Phil Smartt

Latter-day Saints Charities is a world-wide humanitarian organization that focuses on self-reliance and partners with other charitable organizations and governments, including UNICEF, the Red Cross, Catholic Charities, the World Food Programme, etc., to help those in need. Since 1985, Latter-day Saints Charities has provided assistance “to millions of people in 195 countries.” 

"Funding comes from both members and friends of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who generously give of their means. None of [the] funding comes from government grants or large corporate donations.  One hundred percent of donations go towards projects dedicated to humanitarian aid efforts, and all overhead costs are paid fully by the church. [LDS Charities] strives to serve all races, nationalities, and religions and to encourage beneficiaries to participate in giving back to their own communities.”  To learn more, please visit https://www.latterdaysaintcharities.org.

In the greater Chattanooga area, LDS Charities through Deseret Industries and in collaboration with the Episcopal Migration Ministries, has been assisting Bridge Refugee Services.  Bridge is a non-profit under the umbrella of EMM, which helps refugees find dignity, hope and opportunity in their new homeland. To learn more, please visit https://www.bridgerefugees.org.

For the past two years, Deseret Industries has provided Bridge with furniture for newly arriving refugees.  Jennifer Croxall, pre-arrival specialist for Bridge, said among her many duties is to help obtain and prepare apartments for new arrivals and make sure the apartments are cleaned, stocked with groceries and set up with all the necessary furniture.  Jennifer selects what they need and Deseret Industries sends a semi-truck filled with furniture, like kitchen tables, chairs and dressers.  The furniture is high quality to last the families for a long time.  The families may take the furniture with them when they move.  Because furniture is one of the bigger expenses, the grant from LDS Charities is significant.  

Other ways The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is helping Bridge is through volunteerism.  Women of the Church consistently donate time, talents and goods to benefit those moving to Chattanooga, including driving/transporting new arrivals to various appointments, etc.  Bridge also continues to need further donations.  Contact information for Bridge can be found at JustServe.org. JustServe.org is “a website where the volunteer needs of organizations may be posted and volunteers may search for places to serve in the community.”  JustServe.org is a free site provided as a service by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and does not discriminate based on race, religion, gender, ethnicity or sexual orientation.

 


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