Refugee Sponsorship Project

Committee photo left to right:  Amy Hallman Grout, Carol Wighton, Judy Niesing, Kevin Reed (co-chair), Gillian Schell (co-chair), and Shirley Taylor.


In September 2015, a Refugee Sponsorship Committee was formed of members of St. Peter’s concerned with the ever growing refugee crisis in Syria and surrounding countries. We started by exploring the possibility of our congregation sponsoring a Syrian refugee family. Once we determined that it could be done, we divided up the tasks and began working on making it a reality. After official approval from our Church Council at the end of November 2015, a presentation was made to the congregation to lay out our plans and support was requested.

The response was wonderful. Along with our congregation, we have the support of community groups and schools and have received two grants. In mid 2016, with generous monetary and in kind support, we reached our fundraising goal and have furnished a town house for our family. We were very excited to receive word about the designating of our family from Syria - the Alyousefs - in November 2016.

This experience will stretch the welcoming capacity of our congregation and inform our spiritual growth during this upcoming year of sponsorship. If you would like to get involved, please contact our co-chair Gillian Schell at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Donations can be directed to the St. Peter’s United Church with attention to Refugee Sponsorship Fund.


Update – December 2016

Church members greet the Alyousef family at the Sudbury airport


Recently, the St. Peter’s Refugee Sponsorship Committee received confirmation of a match for their sponsored family - the Alyousef family of 8 from Syria. We were excited to announce that they would arrive at the Sudbury airport on Wednesday December 7, 2016 at 9:25 am. 

On December 7, a group from the St. Peter’s refugee sponsorship committee and our church community welcomed the family, along with representatives of other refugee families and support groups.  The family is settled in their townhouse in New Sudbury and orientation and school arrangements are being completed.  The family is very happy to be in Sudbury and we look forward to further contacts as the settling process is completed. An account of the welcome can be found at http://www.thesudburystar.com/2016/12/07/new-syrian-family-arrives .

Thanks to the generosity of St. Peter’s congregation and the Sudbury community, the Alyousef’s house is now comfortably equipped and their closets are full of winter clothing and footwear. We are enormously grateful to all of you who helped us to welcome the family and to ensure that their needs are met. At this time, please do not bring any more donations of clothing or household items to the church. Thank you again for your warmth and generosity.



As followers of Jesus Christ, our mission is, to worship God, to nurture faith, to foster a caring, inclusive, and affirming church family, to serve our community, to work for peace and justice, to respect the earth.

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