The River of Life Dallas Church in Texas is preparing to welcome Ukrainian refugee families as President Biden announced that the U.S. will take in 100,000 Ukrainian refugees within weeks, according to Spectrum News 1. The River of Life Dallas Church already welcomed two Ukrainian families last week, and volunteers are now taking off of work to plan and prepare for more by organizing the necessary resources and aid to help the families resettle.
Pastor Leonid Regheta explained that the congregation is stepping up to provide financial support and volunteers are hard at work preparing to welcome the Ukrainian refugees. They are preparing resources in the Ukrainian language along with collecting and sorting donated supplies such as toiletries. Pastor Regheta and church volunteers are working hastily to organize as much as they can as refugees begin to arrive and they expect a “huge wave” in the coming weeks.
One volunteer, Elena Bennett, a Russian native, shared that she hopes to help in any way possible knowing that the Ukrainian refugees’ lives have been tragically changed forever. Bennett added that she believes what Vladimir Putin is doing is wrong, and that “more good deeds are needed to outweigh the harm he’s inflicting.”
According to Spectrum News 1, the church is partnering with Hope International Ministries to help refugee children resettle. Hope International Ministries has been partnered for years with local churches in Ukraine, Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, and Estonia, which have now turned their facilities into refugee shelters according to Hope International Ministries. The organization is continuing to provide necessary supplies including food, water, blankets, clothes, and medical care to locations in and around Ukraine.
Ukrainian refugee families and children have experienced unimaginable tragedy in their homelands. Leaving behind their loved ones, their homes, and their country, refugees face many challenges as they begin to rebuild their lives after everything fell apart. Providing a place of refuge, the churches that will be welcoming the Ukrainian refugees are not only giving them shelter and resources for survival, but helping them find the hope they so desperately need while being surrounded by compassionate people and prayer.