July/August 2021 Newsletter

   Meeting the needs of Asylum Seekers within a Supportive Community in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont


We may be close to receiving one or two new guests, pregnant women from Latin American fleeing abuse in their home countries. It’s hard to predict when, but these things can happen very quickly.  As our guest list grows, we need to raise more money and we need more people to help with fundraising. We’re looking for a new chair of our fundraising committee as well as people willing to join it. If you think you might be able to help, please get in touch by responding to this email, nekasanvt@gmail.com.

July 6 Gathering

Thirty-three NEKASAN volunteers joined our three guests in Libby Hillhouse’s beautiful garden in Danville on July 6 to celebrate our emergence from the pandemic and our accomplishments.  Our President, Michelle Rutman, welcomed the crowd and gave a brief summary of what we’ve been able to do already and our plans for the coming year. One of our guests, an accomplished chef, prepared special Cuban pizzas loaded with good things. Board members brought a variety of dishes to round out the feast. Thanks to everyone who came and contributed to this joyful celebration.

Update on Our Guests

Our current guests continue to thrive. Our guest in Danville is working full time for a landscaping company and enjoys the work. He will begin a training course for a CDL license in October. Our guest in St. J is planning to begin EMT training and then a Respiratory Therapy training program in the fall and in the meanwhile is busy preparing to take his driving test. Our third guest in Peacham is working part-time for a local food business and earns extra money stacking wood for neighbors. He and his fiancé are expecting a child in September and are busy preparing for the new arrival. They need a place of their own. If you have a mother-in-law apartment or know of a suitable, affordable living situation, please contact us through our website, nekasan.org. They will also need help with child care and employment. As we said above, we are very excited about the prospect of welcoming one or two new guests from Latin America, both pregnant. A NEKASAN volunteer who is fluent in Spanish and is experienced in working with vulnerable populations has offered to host them and their babies.

Our Needs

Financial: Additional funding is crucial as we expand the number of people, we serve, including family groups. We need donors who can contribute, preferably on a monthly basis, and we need people who are motivated to help with fundraising,

Sponsors and Hosts:  As new guests arrive, we will need people willing to act as sponsors and hosts.  If you think you might enjoy hosting a mother and child in your home for some period of time, we would like to talk to you.  Three local families are hosting our present guests and can tell you about their experiences.

Housing and Employment: We need volunteers to help with housing and employment. Some of our guests who are currently living with their sponsors would like more independent living situations. If you know of affordable housing options in our area, please get in touch. We also need people willing to help current and future guests find jobs. They have many talents and interests. If you would like to help this effort and join our employment committee, please contact us at nekasan.org.

Volunteers: We need help in many areas: joining a team to welcome new guests and provide ongoing support, providing recreational and social activities, helping with transportation, donating clothing and household supplies, publicity, social media, and much more.  Please consider joining our team. Please visit our website nekasan.org where you can donate online, explore volunteer opportunities, learn more about us, and contact us with your questions. Thank you all for your interest and support.