Saturday, July 13, 2019

Creating "Go Packs" for Migrant Children

One of the most wonderful things that I've noticed about our Migrant Children's Book Drive is how many people are saying thank you. Most of the packages arriving from caring people who have ordered books from our recommended titles Amazon List include a section where the sender can write a note on their gift receipt.

I read each note when I open the packages. Over and over again, I see the words "Thank you so much for letting us help." And it has really made it clear how people don't just want to give money to a worthy cause (though I have NO DOUBT that money is needed to help these families with legal fees, medical fees, etc.), but they want to give someTHING that is going to directly impact these families, specifically the children.

We have all felt helpless about the crisis along the border and the horrid camps where children are being kept in the worst conditions imaginable. It seems like there's so little we can do other than protest, call our politicians, or put pressure on the companies funding these private prisons.

So, I think that is why the book drive has been so successful.

And yet even so, people are still messaging me or leaving comments asking, "How can I do more?"

That's why I wanted to share another possibility. I've been working with Save the Children on the book drive. And yesterday, they sent me this flyer describing another way people can help.

Remember, these children and their families have already been in a detention center. They've been released and are now free and legal to move about the country to travel to their sponsor family, with whom they will stay until their court hearing in which their appeal for asylum will be heard.

Go Packs are small bags with activities, nourishment, and comfort that the children can take with them as they leave the shelter and Save the Children and travel to their sponsor families.

Maybe you can organize a kitting event with your students, club, team, youth group, or organization? I would recommend approaching a local business or nonprofit to underwrite some of the content, such as the small backpack which will hold all the supplies. For example, I found these on Oriental Trading and these on Amazon. Your local dollar store should have all the other items (except, maybe the Spanish-language book?) listed on the flyer above.

Just remember that a minimum of 25 bags will be accepted by Save the Children. If your organization can help, contact me through my blog or Facebook page and I'll put you in touch with Save the Children.

Thank you for your compassionate, helpful hearts.


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