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    A shopping spree for the whole family

    DAY 60

    The Goodwill of Friends

    When we visited the Mohamud family a few days ago – bringing them some household goods like a microwave and colander – they were struck by the family’s ability to adapt quickly to Minnesota, despite them having arrived only in January. But, says Chris Kindler of ARC, there were still many needs. “They were so friendly and thankful for the gifts,” says Chris, “but the four kids didn’t really have some other things they needed to keep warm, like winter boots and warm sweaters.”

    This gave us an idea. What if, for Day 60, we go back to this family and surprise them with a shopping spree? That way, they can pick out exactly the things that they need – and take the kids with them, too. So we decided to go back and visit the Mohamuds, this time with Goodwill gift cards in hand.

    Originally from Somalia, Osman and Safiyo Mohamud – proud parents of four – lived with their family in a refugee camp in Ethiopia for nine years. And then, just a few months ago, they learned they were to be resettled in St. Paul. Now, the kids are in school, they have an apartment to live in, and are relying on friends who have cars to get them around.

    “We get by,” said Osman, in the car on our way to Goodwill. “Our friends take us to the grocery store, and our kids take the bus to school.” But, transportation can be tough – so a shopping trip out with the entire family was a treat.

    As soon as we arrived at the Goodwill, the kids’ eyes opened wide in excitement – they hardly knew where to begin!

    Soon though, the basket was filled with all the things they’ve needed – like snow boots, winter jackets, sweaters, shirts, pants, and scarves – along with some toys, too.

    Toys and other knick-knacks almost never make the trip here with refugee families – there’s only so much room in a suitcase. So some extra fun goes a long way. The Mohamud’s daughter Jawaahir, in particular, fell in love with a delicate china doll. Once she found it, she held to it tightly the entire time.

    With just a few hundred dollars worth of much-needed items – things to protect against the cold and bring them a little extra joy – the Mohamud’s house is starting to feel more like a home. And, they can rest assured knowing that they have neighbors who are looking out for them. Who will make sure they stay warm.

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    Changemakers 365

    by Alight


    The world’s tough problems can seem insurmountable. So at Alight, while we tackle those big problems we also do what’s doable. Right then. And that’s what Changemakers 365 is all about. Learn more!


    Changemakers 365 members give either $30 per month or a one-time gift of $365 (it’s free for anyone who has ever lived in a refugee camp). Join us!

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