Music at Southminster supports refugee sponsorship

RefSpon-Logoby Robert Taylor

Roland Graham, artistic director of Doors Open for Music at Southminster, announced at the weekly music series’ first fall concert on September 23 that the series would be lending its support for a local group working on the sponsorship of a Syrian refugee family.

The Ottawa South Committee for Refugee Sponsorship (OSCRS) has been meeting since the spring of this year. The ecumenical group includes members from the Anglican and United churches, Quakers and Muslims, as well as people with no religious affiliation. Its base is Trinity Anglican Church on Bank Street in Old Ottawa South.

A family of Syrian refugees has been identified and the committee is now working to gather information and complete the forms needed for sponsorship. There is a lot of work to be done, now and after the family arrives, since the OSCRS will be responsible for the family during their first year in Canada.

Many in the community have been seeking meaningful ways to assist in the wake of this great humanitarian disaster. The Doors Open for Music at Southminster series’ role will be to educate people about this initiative through the concerts it presents each week, and through email to its regular subscribers who now number in the hundreds.

Members of the OSCRS committee will be present at each Wednesday noon-hour concert over the fall (the fall series continues through December 16) to provide information about the project and receive donations or pledges of support.

The need is urgent. According to the United Nations Refugee Agency, as of June of this year, “globally, one in every 122 humans is now either a refugee, internally displaced or seeking asylum.”

Potential supporters will be invited to pledge a suggested $25 a month for four months or make a one-time donation of any amount. All donations will be eligible for charitable tax receipts. The goal is to accomplish this objective by many modest donations from people working within their means.

For further information contact Robert Taylor, who chairs the refugee committee, at or 613-230-3903.

The Doors Open for Music weekly noon-hour concert series is presented on Wednesdays at Southminster United Church, located on Bank Street next to the Rideau Canal. Concerts are a mix of classical music, jazz and more. Admittance is by freewill offering with proceeds going to remunerate the artists and defray production costs. See this page for the lineup of remaining fall concerts.

Robert Taylor is a retired public servant who chairs the Ottawa South Committee for Refugee Sponsorship.

Support to Refugees

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