As you guys might know by now, Dan and Sim have been in Izmir, Turkey for the past week, and really, that’s thanks to you and your incredible generosity! We asked you to work your amazing magic and help get Sim to Izmir, and that you did! Your donations have made it possible for Sim to spend 4 weeks on-the-ground with Dan, and you were actually so generous that he raised EXTRA money, which will now be spent on the immediate needs of the refugees they meet.
Their first week has already been hugely productive. They’ve been working closely with an established organisation called ReVi (Refugee Volunteers of Izmir), and it’s been an incredibly insightful experience.
ReVi really embody the kind of work that we’re all about at The Worldwide Tribe. What they do is personal, full of love and compassion, and aims to provide long-term solutions for the refugees in their area – right up our street!
ReVi is a group of independent volunteers that work with Syrian families who, for the foreseeable future, plan to stay in Izmir, families who are already set-up in homes. ReVi’s focus is to provide long-term, sustainable solutions that help these families build lives for themselves.
Currently ReVi work with over 200 families in the area, with more added every week. Each time a new family is added, ReVi have the most fantastic welcome process. A small team visit each family with a translator on this initial meeting, where they take the time to get to know the family and collect their information. Shortly after they check-in again, assisting with any immediate needs like providing them with a gift card to buy food.
Then, the family are officially part of the ReVi community!
What’s even better about ReVi is that they really feed off the interests and skills of the people that they work with, as well as their needs. They have set up two schools and are planning a third, for which they employ teachers from their family database, and the translators they use are from the regions affected.
They run weekly activities like picnics in the park, arts and crafts, knitting and sewing, and they even sell the products that are made in these groups! One of our favourite things that ReVi organises is their big weekly dinner. Each week, three refugee families are paid to cook a big dinner for the volunteers and the food is amazing! All of the recipes are going to be put together in a cookbook – how great is that?
What ReVi are really creating here is this amazing, strong sense of community. They build relationships and trust with all of the families that they work with, address their urgent needs and ensure that they have a strong support system within which they can try to build a life.
Dan and Sim have joined the ReVi team on the ground, visiting families, building relationships and really getting a feel for their work and the city. For the next 3 weeks, they will be looking to learn from the amazing, inspiring team at ReVi and see the impact that they can have.
Again, thank you SO much for you huge, incredible generosity. Your donations have enabled Dan and Sim to quickly assess and contribute towards short-term, urgent needs of families as well as the long-term, sustainable solutions of ReVi!
You can find out more about ReVi and donate straight to their cause here.