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Immigrants: They're Also Here to Give Back

Daniel Rearick, Uniting NC  |  July 2, 2013

Uniting NC: Workers with produce

Photo: Uniting NC

As originally published on the Uniting NC website:

Last Saturday we continued our series of service events bringing together immigrants and non-immigrants to give back to their community. And again the response was wonderful. This time we had over 30 volunteers from 10 different countries all working together on a community farm that provides fresh produce to the Food Bank of Eastern and Central North Carolina.

We sometimes hear cynics tell us that people are coming to the U.S. looking for handouts. They emphasize costs without considering contributions. But have they ever met the people they’re talking about? Anyone with us on the farm on Saturday would have seen a hard-working group of volunteers giving up their Saturday to pick blueberries; plant sweet potatoes, melons, tomatoes and peppers; weed row after row of new crops; and generally do whatever was needed.

And this generosity is by no means limited to a Uniting NC event. Why is that? Because it’s that same hard-working, giving nature that brings immigrants in the first place — to provide for their families and support those who stayed behind.

We’ve had volunteers who were native North Carolinians and ‘Yankee’ transplants; young people who came here to study and are now successful professionals; and many recent immigrants and refugees who are still struggling to get by. It’s amazing how eager they are to help, particularly those still working hard themselves to reach the American Dream.  For those who think of being helpful and giving as core American attributes, then these volunteers are already as American as can be.

By Daniel Rearick, Uniting NC

Learn more about the CWS Immigration and Refugee Program office in Durham, N.C. and its mission of welcoming immigrants and refugees.

Tag: Immigration

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Submitted by Joe Moran on Jul 09, 2:23 PM CDT
What a wonderful story by Dan Rearick! Why am I not amazed at the "giving spirit" of refugees? When I first came to Durham, NC in 1981 I participated in a 3-day "Diversity Workshop" given by a nationally prominent training group. This was a time when Mexican and Central American refugees and immigrants were beginning to appear in noticeable numbers here. In a discussion we were asked to name attributes that came to mind when we thought about these new arrivals. Having lived in Central America for 19 years I submitted that they were generous to a fault. Some in the group doubted that, but in the discussion that followed it became clear that most had experienced little contact with these new Latin immigrants. I maintain today that so many of the new arrivals, poor as many of them are, would give me the shirt off their backs if they saw my need. Thank you for your good work with Refugees and Immigrants, CWS!
Submitted by Dhanpaul on Jul 04, 11:44 AM CDT
yes. Statement of Faith 1. We believe the Bible to be the inspired, the only infallible and authoritative Word of God. 2. We believe that there is one God, eternally existent in three distinct persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. 3. We believe worship of God should be inspirational. Therefore, we give proper place to music in our worship. 4. We believe in THE APOSTLES CREED as the fundamental facts of Christian faith. 5. We affirm that for the salvation of lost and sinful people, regeneration by the Holy Spirit and Jesus Christ is the only way. 6. We affirm the present ministry of the Holy Spirit by whose indwelling the Christian, is enabled to live a godly life. As citizens of God's kingdom, we are called to love, worship, and obey our Lord and also to love and serve His Body, the Church, and to present the whole gospel for the whole person throughout the whole world.

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