A list of local groups sponsoring Syrian refugees

Supporters join in a sold-out fundraising dinner hosted at Beach United Church by the Beach United and St. Aidan's refugee group. Featuring history talks, a 'lifeboat' and live music by the St. Aidan's Regrets, the Nov. 7 event raised over $30,000.
PHOTO: Submitted

Volunteer groups across the East End are fundraising as they get ready to sponsor families of refugees fleeing the Syrian civil war. Most groups have set an initial goal of between $30,000 and $40,000, enough to support a family of four in Toronto for a year.

The following is an updated list of local sponsorship groups and upcoming events.

To add a group or an event, email jon@beachmetro.com.

Beaches Presbyterian Church Refugee Group

Contact: Klaas Kraay at kraay@ryerson.ca

Beach United and St. Aidan’s Anglican Church

With five members each from Beach United, St. Aidan’s and the community at large, this sponsorship group hosted a sold-out fundraising dinner in November.

Contact Karen Dale at karen@beachuc.com

East-West Refugee Collective

A group of friends from across Toronto, the EWRC publishes a blog and has a fact sheet for anyone looking to help out.

Contact: ewrctoronto@gmail.com

Corpus Christi Refugee Sponsorship Committee

Contact: Catherine LeBlanc-Miller at cleblancmiller@yahoo.com

Church of the Resurrection (‘The Rez’)

Donations to the The Rez’ refugee sponsorship group can be made using its Canada Helps page. On Dec. 5, the Woodbine and Danforth Avenue church hosted Sleep Out for Syrians, an overnight camping fundraiser organized by the Danforth East Community Association to support sponsorships by The Rez and The Neighourhood Group.

Contact: 416-425-8383

East End Neighbours

A group of five Gerrard India Bazaar-area families are raising money to sponsor a family. Donation link through the group’s Facebook page, or contact eastend.neighbours@gmail.com.

Kingswood Initiative for Newcomers (‘KIN’)

Contact: Michael McLaughlan at mgmlaw1@gmail.com

The Neighbourhood Group

A community service agency that includes Neighbourhood Link, the Neighbourhood Group is accepting donations  towards its campaign to sponsor two refugee families on its Canada Helps page and has campaign updates available on Facebook.

Contact: Philip Unra at punrah@cnh.on.ca

Neighbourhood Unitarian Universalist Church

The congregation at NUUC has a long history of supporting refugees, and the church is a member of the East End Refugee Committee.

Contact: Michael Polanyi at michaelpolanyi@rogers.com

Upper Beaches Lifeline Syria

Until Dec. 18, this Upper Beach group is taking orders for $10 boxes of homemade cookies at upperbeacheslifelinesyria@gmail.com.

Started by Upper Beachers who met on a neighbourhood Facebook page, they are also running a prize draw, and preparing to publish a crowd-sourced cookbook called Cooking from the Community Cupboard.

Donations can be made using the email address above, and the group has an active Facebook page.

Contact: upperbeacheslifelinesyria@gmail.com

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