Sunday, February 3, 2013

Refugee Garden

I am not sure which of us thought of it first, as we have been kicking this idea around for so long. What about making a market garden training center focused on helping refugees? Refugees are people displaced by war & social unrest where they have had to flee their home country and try to start over in a new place. Refugees come to this country and are faced with a lot of traumatic life changes. They are in a new country, with a foreign language, customs, concurrency, employment system, etc. They are often familiar with agriculture in their home countries, but here in America they almost always occupy low paying menial jobs. Refugees often settle within the inner city of large urban areas. The children learn English faster than the parents, and role reversal upsets the family order. When old enough many of these refugee children join the military to master violence that they can use in the wars back in their home country.

Sunshine and Harvest have a dream of ministering to others via agriculture in a country setting.

We dream of a garden where refugees can come in peace and till the soil for their sustenance. Where they can work in agriculture  and do what they know how to do best, and stay connected as a family unit. Where they can learn English, grow produce for their family and to sell, earn an income for their family, and participate in producing wholesome food for their communities.

We are thinking about a project that would mentor and train refugees in a skill and open the door to an entrepreneurial, self employed business. We see better profit margins in organic growing, with strategic marketing to local consumers and outlets.

We dream of being able to minister to the soul and live out an expression of Biblical simplicity of a life of service.

We realize we don't have the required knowledge, or financial backing to make such a plan work. But we are thinking about how God will use us. Right now it seems more practical for us to minister to refugees here in the USA than go to a foreign land as a missionary family. We hope to touch people here that could then someday return to their home countries with the beam of Gospel light radiating from their hearts as well.

We are not the first to think of this idea. Following are some refugee gardens we want to learn more about

No comments:

Post a Comment