Update on Siamoy and Soghra
It has been a while since I have shared an update on Siamoy and Soghra (our new Afghan friends), and much has been accomplished. It almost seems impossible to say they have only been here for 3 months. Surely it has been a full year at least!! We had so many moments of hope only to walk away from appointments or meetings feeling discouraged and as if we went backwards. I am thankful for the ways we have grown amid the challenges.
As of now, both women have all the legal documents needed, learned to navigate MARTA and Uber, and have secured their first jobs with benefits. Soghra works with Kiddos and Siamoy will begin working at Intercontinental Buckhead. As a church, NDBC has shown many ways of offering support, and I am thankful and humbled. From initially providing the very beds for them to sleep on, to gift cards to cover their basic needs, to MARTA assistance, to help with jobs and advice, to opening your homes as well, this church has really shown what a community can do when we serve those who desperately need to be surrounded with love and support.
Both women have invitations to live in homes that are closer to their new jobs. These homes are temporary as the goal is for each woman to find a place to call their own.
My eyes have been opened. I cannot imagine how I would handle all that they have had to endure. These women do not know when or if they will ever be reunited with their families. I have never had to worry about when a bomb might explode near my home. I have never had to worry about the safety of my family members. I have never had to feel the weight of financially providing for my parents. I have never had to worry about whether I could afford the transportation to get to my job or wonder if others may treat me poorly because of my religion and country. I have never had to be so dependent on others to help me simply survive with the most basic needs.
My words feel dry in comparison with the depth of all I have felt in accompanying these women for this brief time. In many ways, I want to hold them close, but I know they must find their wings here. They will have many difficult things to face along with wonderful days of joy. I trust they will listen to their own wild heartbeat and live into the fullness of who they are now and who they will become. I am confident their presence, wherever they land, will be a gift to all those they encounter.
Ashley Guthas |