Opportunities

  • weddingBVORThis is not an AGC story, but it is a Canadian story. 

    In the summer of 2017, Natasha Carew and Sean Ritchie got married and decided to forgo wedding gifts and instead encouraged their guests to help raise $26,000 to sponsor a refugee family through the BVOR program, and give them a new life in Canada.

    Their story was written up in The Star after the Sudanese family they were matched with had arrived and settled in Toronto.

    Looking back on their experience, Natasha and Sean wish others their age were doing more to bring forcibly displaced families to Canada. They understand that it could just as easily be us looking for a new home to resettle in. They both work full-time, and found the time commitments to be very manageable as they worked with their team.

    The newspaper article link above and the YouTube video below are worth the watch, and worth sharing. Enjoy, and be inspired!

  • ss BVOR 2019The BVOR Program is designed to resettle refugees identified by the UNHCR and submitted to Canadian Visa Offices abroad. It is only the families or individuals who are most in need of resettlement that are referred under this program. Click the image to the right to watch "Four Steps to BVOR Sponsorship" now.

  • flag pakistanIn our world today (2019), Pakistan is ranked by World Watch List at #5 of the top 50 nations where "it is most dangerous to follow Jesus," ahead of Sudan (#6), Eritrea (#7), and Yemen (#8).

  • Click on "Events" above to see events currently available in our communities or on-line.

  • training1Date:Tuesday, Dec 10, 2019
    Time: 1:00 - 3:00pm AST

    Topics covered:

    • an overview of the application process;
    • recent updates and changes to processing;
    • who can be included on one application package;
    • what supporting documents need to be included in the application package;
    • completing the forms for Groups of Five;
    • completing the forms for Community Sponsors;
    • proof of funds requirements; and,
    • completing the refugees' forms.

    To register for this webinar, please click on this link.

  • Attend a webinar for an introduction to the Private Sponsorship of Refugees programThis is one of the webinars that is required training by your SAH. The Team Lead and one or two others from the Core Team must take this webinar.

    Date: Monday, Dec 2, 2019
    Time: 1:00 - 2:00 PM AST

    This webinar will cover:

    • the history & launch of PSR program
    • Program evolvement over the years
    • PSR as part of global resettlement efforts

    To register for this webinar, click here.

    If that time is not convenient, the RSTP Video Library has a copy of the webinar available here.

  • What is the Refugee Highway? Where is it? Who travels this Highway?

    This 6 minute video will answer these questions and describe how the church is particularly equipped to respond with the compassion, grace and love of Jesus to those who find themselves on it. 

    We encourage every congregation to watch and then pray to understand how they should respond to the ongoing global crisis.

  • rstpRSTP offers an online training course called Introduction to the Private Sponsorship of Refugees Program two to three times a year.

  • JAS 19 0836ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Winnipeg, MB
    COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: Syria
    FAMILY SIZE: Nine

    A Syrian man, aged 42, accompanied by his spouse and their seven children, has completed six years of education and has worked as a plumber and pipe fitter. He is fluent in Arabic and has some English language training.

    His spouse is a homemaker. The family has received settlement support. Six of the couple’s children are registered for school, and one is fully dependent on his parents.

    Medical needs: The father has withdrawn from English language training due to the ongoing medical needs of their youngest child. This has prevented the family from engaging in other settlement services and accessing various community resources.

    Sponsor assistance: A sponsor could: give the family a support system to help with their daily challenges; allow them to dedicate the time necessary to develop their English language skills; help them to fully connect and integrate within their local community; provide informal English practice; and, assist with managing the child’s ongoing medical appointments.

  • JAS 19 0836ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Hamilton, ON
    COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: Somalia
    FAMILY SIZE: One

    A Somali woman, aged 26, who arrived in Canada in late 2018, is hospitalized due to a disability.

    Medical needs: She suffers from an untreatable muscle disorder which will worsen over time. She is paralyzed, unable to move her arms and is slowly losing the use of her hands. She cannot go anywhere by herself. The hospital does not offer English training.

    Sponsor assistance: A sponsor could: reduce her feelings of isolation and loneliness through social, psychological, and emotional support; introduce her to the community to allow her to expand her social connections and build positive relationships with new people; and, informally help her practice English.

  • JAS 19 0836ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Calgary, AB
    COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: Syria
    FAMILY SIZE: 4

    This single mother from Syria and her three children arrived in Calgary in late 2018. The children have adapted well to school and are learning English.

    Special needs: The mother struggles with prior trauma, and has difficulty in caring for her children while adjusting to life in Canada.

    Medical needs: Each of the children have asthma, requiring frequent medical appointments. The youngest daughter suffers from a blood disorder, which requires additional medical support. The mother suffers from back pain, which makes it difficult for her to attend resettlement programs and language classes. She feels isolated and lonely, and has difficulty sleeping.

    Sponsor assistance: With the support of a sponsor, the mother could focus on her own integration by attending language classes, counselling sessions for past trauma and employment programs. A sponsor could help her understand and navigate the health care system.

  • Through the JAS program, the government and private sponsors work together to support refugees in Canada for up to 24 months, depending on the needs of teh resettled refugee. In a few cases, the private sponsor may support refugees for up to 36 months. 

    These refugees receive income support from the Government of Canada and emotional, moral and settlement support by a sponsor. Some refugees are identified overseas for the JAS program. Others are converted into JAS cases after they arrive in Canada if it becomes clear that they need more support.

    Follow this linkor This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to see if there is a JAS case in your community.

  • wilderness flowerA poem by Pastor Farshid Fathi

    Born in 1979, Farshid has been working in ministry since 1997. In the years 2001 – 2005, he was instrumental in planting 48 underground house churches in his native Iran.

    On 25 December 2010, Farshid was arrested along with a number of other church leaders. He was kept 361 days in solitary confinement in Evin Prison, often enduring severe interrogation. In March 2011 Farshid was sentenced to six years in prison for acting against national security through evangelism and promoting Christianity. In 2014 prison guards broke Farshid’s foot and thumb during a prison search. Farshid was later transferred to Rajaei Shahr Prison and released on 21 December 2015. While Farshid was in prison, his wife took their two children to Canada, where they have applied for citizenship. 

    Today, he remains in Turkey registered as an asylum seeker, but still not recognised as a refugee. Toronto area churches, this is an opportunity for you!


    My wilderness is painful, but lovely.
    Some parts of my wilderness are covered with thorns and hurt my feet,
    but I love it, and that's why I call it 'lovely pain'.

    My wilderness is so hot that my tears disappear before falling on the ground,
    but it is cool under Your shadows.

  • naomi house refugee transitional housingThrough our connections with the Baptist General Conference, our Manitoba churches have a unique opportunity to partner with a Constituent Group in Winnipeg to sponsor Pakistani refugees who are stranded in Thailand. The group in Winnipeg is known by both Lorne Meisner, and Tim & Susan Davis.

  • roadOlivia is part of a group at Park Avenue Bible Church in Melfort, SK that has connected with a family overseas. She was asked if she would write something about that experience to share with our AGC churches. Thank-you, Olivia, for your submission.

    "So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith. Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary." Galatians 6:9-10

    I sat down to write up a piece about how we got to this place of praying for the persecuted church and about our heart for the plight of our brothers and sisters that are being persecuted for the sake of the gospel. As time moved along, my own heart was drawn toward refugees and the possibility of sponsoring someone. Yet as I put these thoughts down, I ended up with something entirely different.

  • Attend a webinar for an introduction to the Private Sponsorship of Refugees programThis is one of the webinars that is required training by our SAH. Every member of the Core Team must take this webinar.

    Date:Friday, Dec 20, 2019
    Time: 1:00 - 3:00pm AST

    This webinar will cover:

    • when should sponsors start preparing for the end of sponsorship
    • what to consider when preparing newcomers for the post-sponsorship period
    • services available for sponsored newcomers after the sponsorship period
    • evaluating the sponsorship experience. and
    • the post-sponsorship relationship

    To register for this webinar, click here.

    If this timing is not convenient, the RSTP Video Library has a copy of the webinar available here.

  • webinar2

    This is one of the webinars that is required training by your SAH. The Team Lead must take this webinar, and then communicate the applicable content to the refugee before the Visa Office interview.

    Date: TBD 
    Time: 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM EST

    The interview with the Canadian visa offices (VO) abroad is the stepping stone towards granting permanent residence status for your sponsored refugees and bringing them to safety in Canada.

  • If you are looking for a family to sponsor, a family or person to connect with via email, Facebook or WhatsApp, or simply educating yourself about situations of people in the world today, you will find real stories of real people in this part of our website. All names and personalized information has been changed to protect anonymity, since refugee status determination or personal safety may be undermined if sensitive information is made public.

    Contact us if you need more information.

  • protecting refugees equals stronger communitiesRefugee Rights Day is celebrated each year in Canada on April 4th. It is an opportunity to bring attention to the advances made in the protection of refugee rights in Canada as a result of the Singh Decision. Refugee Rights Day is also a time to learn about the threats to those rights.

    You can get more information about the Supreme Court's 1985 Singh decision, and the importance of that decision today, along with other practical resources to assist you in promoting Refugee Rights Day in your community.

  • Churches and community organizations in Port Hope and Cobourg, Ontario, have welcomed several refugee families as newcomers to their community.

    This 3-minute video introduces us to come of those families and speaks of the call that God's children have to "be a neighbour" to those who are in need of a home today.

     

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