At the present time, there is a startling number of Syrians----more than 1.6 million--awaiting resettlement.
Currently, Vive—the US’ largest refugee shelter, located right here in Buffalo—is receiving an influx of refugees from the world’s most distressed countries. Significantly, Vive is seeing its first Egyptians and Syrians who are fleeing persecution, desperate to be free.
The people who come to Vive are victims of hostility and bloodshed, seeking safety and freedom. All too often they arrive shocked and traumatized, without knowledge of the U.S. Legal system including the asylum process. In coming to Vive, they have landed in the right place to have shelter, food, legal assistance—and hard-won freedom.
Achieving freedom is a lifetime goal for many of our residents, who have been trapped in parts of the world where fear and unrest color every minute of every day.
Vive believes that now, more than ever, we need to celebrate our glorious freedom by calling attention to the fundamentals of freedom, and the horrors of the tumultuous conflict that millions face throughout the world.
To commemorate this freedom, Vive invites the community to join us at our annual Freedom Bowl on Saturday, October 12th at 12 Noon. Tickets for admission are $50, with the entire amount going to pay for direct services to refugees. Participants can select a bowl handcrafted by Sisters of St. Francis of the Neumann communities in Williamsville and students from St. Mary Swormville Elementary School. The bowls will be filled with international foods prepared by residents of the shelter.
Foods will come from the Congo, Eritrea, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Uganda, Burundi, Rwanda, Angola, Sri Lanka, Somalia, Columbia, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
With the influx of refugees seeking asylum in the US, we have recently had an increase of 65% in the amount of long termers we house. Vive is and has become a transitional and temporary housing facility for many. In other words, Vive is a home to 48 refugees for the next 1-3 years.
Every day women and children are being detained because they do not understand the process to make an asylum claim. In turn they are separated from their children—and children are put into the system. Vive continues to work with Immigration Custom Enforcement (ICE) and Lutheran Immigration and Refugees Services (LIRS) to become an “alternative site” for detention. Vive will always continue to champion freedom.
For more information, call Angela at 892-4354 extension 402.
Most people do not know that the nation’s largest refugee shelter is right here, in Buffalo. Located in a renovated school building at 50 Wyoming Street--on Buffalo’s Ease Side-- Vive offers food, clothing, shelter, and legal assistance to refugees from around the world. Today, there are over 100 people staying at Vive, including 40 children.
In the past 29 years, Vive has assisted over 84,000 refugees from 110 countries in their efforts to enter Canada to apply for refugee status or to apply for asylum in the United States. Vive presently has 118 beds for men, women, and children.