L-R: Jill Peacock and Christine DeMarco of the West Kootenay Friends of Refugees visited the Rossland Gallery to admire the Tyler Toews painting donated to the group. Gallery owner Fletcher Quince barely had time to put the artwork on display before it sold. Photo: Nicole Coenen

L-R: Jill Peacock and Christine DeMarco of the West Kootenay Friends of Refugees visited the Rossland Gallery to admire the Tyler Toews painting donated to the group. Gallery owner Fletcher Quince barely had time to put the artwork on display before it sold. Photo: Nicole Coenen

Major donation helps West Kootenay group prepare for refugees

West Kootenay Friends of Refugees currently has a sponsorship application under review

Submitted by West Kootenay Friends of Refugees

The West Kootenay Friends of Refugees (WKFoR) recently received a welcome donation of $3000 thanks to the generosity of WKFoR member Ivy Miller and Rossland Gallery owner Fletcher Quince.

Ivy donated an impressive painting by Tyler Toews to the group and Fletcher agreed to display and sell it, waiving his usual commission. Less than half an hour after the painting was hung on the wall, it had already been sold to an anonymous buyer from another town who just happened to walk into the gallery at the right moment.

WKFoR currently has a sponsorship application under review for a refugee who has been held on Manus Island off the Australian coast and is currently in the MITA detention centre in Melbourne. After eight years he is eager to find a welcoming community where he can begin again.

READ MORE: Castlegar arts and sports groups receive $200,000 in gaming grants

As well, WKFoR has offered to accept an individual, couple or family from Afghanistan as part of the government’s intention to sponsor 40,000 Afghans who have connections to Canada and would like to come here. Details of the various programs are still being worked out.

The latest figures from the UN are sobering. At least 82.4 million people around the world have been forced to flee their homes. Among them are nearly 26.4 million refugees, unable to return to their countries of origin, around half of whom are under the age of 18. There are also millions of stateless people who have been denied a nationality and have been denied access to basic rights such as education, health care, employment and freedom of movement.

WKFoR’s efforts may not make much of an impact on the millions, but they can help a few. Tax receipts will be issued for donations over $20. You can send eTransfers to wkforfunds@gmail.com or mail a cheques to Box 652 Rossland BC V0G1Y0 if you would like to help.



newsroom@castlegarnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

fundraisingKootenaysrefugeevolunteers