Restoring Dignity #26
Saturday, March 24th, 2018
“Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.”
― Desmond Tutu
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Sign-up to donate items here.
Two years ago, a Karen family of five came to the United States as refugees from their home country of Burma. Prior to arriving in the United States, they lived in a Thailand refugee camp for over 10 years, waiting for a chance at a new life. Before they were forced to flee their home country, the mother and father worked in the mountain areas of Burma, where they helped harvest crops. They lived a peaceful life, with plans of having children and raising a family. However, these dreams were abruptly ended when the raging civil war in Burma intensified to a point where they could no longer live in their village without fear of being killed. They fled with the rest of their family to a refugee camp where they found themselves trapped behind camp fences. The only redeeming thought was of being resettled in another country. At the camps, they gave birth to three beautiful girls, now ages 6, 4, and 2. Shortly after the 2-year-old was born, they discovered that they had been chosen to resettle in the United States. The magnitude of such an opportunity is often hard to grasp among non-refugees. Only 1% (one percent!) of displaced people worldwide are resettled. To be given a ticket to another country is the equivalent of winning the lottery. Upon arriving in the United States, things were looking up for the family. The father got a full-time job at a local meat-packing plant and the mother stayed home to help raise their three little ones. However, shortly afterward she was diagnosed with Graves Disease, an auto-immune disorder that stripped away her energy throughout the day. The struggle of her new illness placed a lot of pressure on the family, and what were once simple activities around the house became difficult chores. Raising three young children with this illness has taken a toll on both parents, and the feeling of hope that once abounded has diminished over the past year. In addition, the family lives on a meager income and has been unable to afford many basic household items that would make life easier, especially for the mother. We found out about their situation and decided to take action. On Saturday, March 24th, 2018 we will be serving them by bringing much-needed household items and by teaching them cleaning and organizational skills. Our aim is to help bring hope back to their lives and to give them a home environment that supports the mother and helps make everyday tasks a little easier. Join us as we work together to bring this family extra support, hope and encouragement!
We are taking action on Saturday, March 24th, 2018 from 10am-6pm, to provide this family with much needed household, cleaning and organizational items. Come join us to bring hope, encouragement, and blessings to them!
Kitchen towels Cooking utensils Clock Silverware Wash rags Pots and pans Plates Bowls Kitchen rug Broom w/dust pan Large, plastic container w/ airtight lid (to store rice in) Plastic storage bags quart size bags freezer gallon bags sandwich bags
Garbage bags Saran wrap Aluminum foil Cutting board Mop Mop bucket Drawer and cupboard liners Bulletin board Tupperware (4) Kitchen chairs Kitchen table
Towels (full, hand, and face) (5) toothbrushes Toothbrush holder Toothpaste Over-the-toilet storage unit/shelf Toilet paper Hand soap Shampoo (adult and kids) Lotion Bath rug Shower curtain Showerliner Shower curtain rings (5) loofahs (2) Deodorant Toilet brush Medium size trash can Laundry drying rack
(4) new pillows (1) queen size mattress (1) queen size box spring (1) queen size plastic zippered bed bug proof mattress protector (200) hangers (4) Hanging shoe racks
- (2) Small nightstands
(2) Lamps New underwear (size women’s small, size men’s small) New socks (size women’s small, size men’s small) Small trash can Mirror
- (1) Dresser
Small bookshelf Decorations & artwork
(3) new pillows Bunkbed frame (2) twin mattresses (2) twin size plastic zippered plastic bed bug proof mattress protector *(must be “bed bug” proof) (3) twin girls themed bedding
- Toy chest
Toys for 2, 4, and 6-year-old girls Books for 2, 4, and 6-year-old girls Art supplies for the girls (big easel-sized paper, perhaps an art easel…the girls thought the walls were made for drawing on…let’s provide them with what they need to draw on so they can keep their art off the walls). Medium trashcan withclosing lid
- Bookshelf/storage area for books and toys
- Storage bins for toys
- (2) dressers
New underwear (all the girls are very small, XS sizes for underwear) Diapers (size 4) for the two-year-old New socks for the 2, 4, and 6-year-old girls (all girls are very small, XS sizes for socks) Decorations & artworks for the girls
- Couch (new or in good pre-owned condition)
- Computer chair
- Computer/homework desk
(1) paper organizer (for bills) (1) picture album Picture frames
- (2) bookshelves
(2) Floor lamps TV TV stand DVD player Artwork/paintings for walls (all sizes, all styles)
Bathroom cleaner Degreaser (Mr. Clean, non-ammonia) Bleach Boxes of gloves (disposable and non-disposable) Windex Vinegar Dawn dish soap Toilet bowl cleaner Carpet cleaning solution Magic erasers (A LOT of them!) Light bulbs (75 W and 100W) Batteries (double AA, triple AAA)
Restoring Dignity Needs
Lunch forafternoon and all-day volunteers (pizza, sandwiches, etc.) Bottled water for volunteers (minimum of 90 bottles) Extra large heavy duty trash bags
There are two ways to drop-off items: (1) At our new storage unit, or (2) on the day of the project at the family’s home. If you plan on dropping off donations at the family’s home, please contact us for their address, and plan on having all items dropped off between 10am-11am, the day of the project.
Store Unit Location:
The Restoring Dignity storage unit is located in the garages behind the Omar Baking Building (4383 Nicholas St. Omaha, NE, 68131–the storage unit is in a fenced-in lot on the corner of 45th and Izard street.
Drop-offs at the storage unit will be on the following dates and times:
Saturday, March 3, 2018 1:00pm-3:00pm
Saturday, March 10th, 2018 1:00pm-4:00pm
**Please note that there will not be any pick-ups for this project. If you are bringing large items, you can drop them off at the location mentioned above, or you can bring them the day of the project.**
- Pre-Shift: Saturday, March 10th, 2018 2:00pm-4:00pm, at the Restoring Dignity Storage Unit: This shift involves getting donations ready for the project date. At the Restoring Dignity Storage Unit.
- Saturday, March 24th, 2018, at the family’s home:
- Transportation: 8am-10am: This shift involves loading items onto trucks at the storage unit, and unloading them at the family’s home. We will provide a U-Haul truck.
- Shift one: 10am-12pm: This shift is for people who want to help with cleaning, organizing clothes, steaming, carpet cleaning, & fixing items.
- Shift two: 12pm-2pm: This shift is for people who want to help with cleaning, organizing clothes, steaming, carpet cleaning, and building items.
- Shift three: 2pm-4pm: This shift is for those who can help move furniture into the apartment, build, & decorate.
- Shift four: 4pm-6pm: This shift is for those who would like to help decorate, arrange furniture, hang pictures, and help take items back to the storage unit.
- Half Day: 10am-2pm: This shift is for someone who would like to have a Restoring Dignity immersion and/or be a project leader.
- Half Day: 2pm-6pm: This shift is for someone who would like to have a Restoring Dignity immersion and/or be a project leader.
- Full Day: 10am-6pm: This shift is for someone who is looking for a full-immersion with Restoring Dignity and/or wants to be a project leader.
- Handyperson shifts: This shift is for a person who is skilled with tools, can help fix broken items in the home, can assemble beds and other furniture, and can hang pictures.
- Video creator: This shift is for someone who can create a high-quality Restoring Dignity “Before and After” video.
Sign up for shifts can be found at the Restoring Dignity Sign-Up Page.
How to Get Involved:
- Donate items:
We could not do these projects without our donors! They are the heart of these projects! Please let us know what you can donate, and we will take the items off of the list above. If someone would like to “adopt” a member of this family or a room in the apartment, by fulfilling the donations needed for that area, let us know. Otherwise, if you have any items in your house that you no longer need or use, please consider donating them to these projects. Your donations truly do make a direct impact on families in need. To donate items to this family, visit our donation sign up page.
- Donate gift cards
On the day of our projects, we often run low on basic cleaning supplies, hardware for hanging curtains, light bulbs, paper towels, toilet paper, and plastic bed wraps to keep down bed bug populations, among other items. Gift cards to major home stores or hardware stores (Target, Walmart, Lowes, Home Depot, etc) are greatly appreciated and help to bridge the supply gap on project days. Contact Hannah (firstname.lastname@example.org) or (402) 305-8139, if you are interested in donating a gift card. If you would like to mail a gift card, please address it to: Restoring Dignity c/o Hannah Wyble, 3505 Hawthorne Avenue, Omaha, NE, 68131.
For this project, we need a minimum of 60 volunteers spaced out over the course of the day. Our volunteers will clean, organize, build beds and decorate. The more volunteers, the faster we can accomplish our goal. We would love to have you join our team! Please visit our Restoring Dignity Sign-Up Page to add yourself to one of our two hour shifts. If you would like to help for a half or full-day, that option is also available.
- Mentor a refugee family
Did you know that hundreds of refugee families are resettled in Omaha every year? If each of them had an American family who could provide mentorship for at least one year, many of the issues that Restoring Dignity steps in to help with could be avoided. If you are interested in mentoring a refugee family (including this one!), contact Refugee Empowerment Center (formerly Southern Sudan Community Association), as they have a mentoring program that is in need of many American volunteers: http://sscaomaha.info/volunteer-opportunities/.
- Spread the word:
Tell your friends and family about this project! They might have an extra lamp or a dresser that is no longer in use. Re-post this blog on your Facebook page, or email it to people you know. The more people that know about these projects, the more donations and volunteers.
Follow us on Facebook:
Restoring Dignity has a Facebook Group that is regularly updated. Please join our group: Restoring Dignity Omaha Facebook Group.
Call or text:
- Email: RestoringDignity@live.com