A Wild Day at Woodland Park Zoo

During the peak of summer, on the exciting day of August 18th, students, families, teachers, and staff from ReWa, MLK, Beacon Hill, and Lake City joined together for a super special trip to Seattle’s famous Woodland Park Zoo. The adventure kicked off with everyone piling onto a bus, and off we went to the zoo’s friendly south entrance. Stepping onto the zoo grounds, we knew we were in for a day that would create memories we’d never forget.

Our expedition commenced amidst the lush ambiance of the Beech Grove area—an enchanting setting that showcased a tapestry of captivating exhibits and immersive activities. Amidst the vibrant surroundings, a medley of engaging pursuits awaited us, from the simple joy of bubble play to spirited dance sessions that enlivened the atmosphere. A special treat came in the form of an artistic station sponsored by ReWa, where we adorned ourselves with intricate animal tattoos, adding a touch of the wild to our experience.

Elevating our adventure further, a duo of tables stood ready for an exclusive “Get to Know an Animal” interaction. These tables provided a unique privilege—an up-close encounter with two captivating creatures: a majestic hawk and a wise turtle. Listening to their stories and learning about their habitats left us in awe of the intricate web of life that fills our planet.

The zoo’s staff had thoughtfully arranged yet another immersive activity, inviting us to explore the sensory delights of nature’s offerings. Leaves, flowers, and sticks took on a new dimension as we engaged our senses, deepening our appreciation for the world around us. Adding a touch of whimsy to our day, we had the delightful opportunity to don butterfly dresses, infusing an extra layer of magic into our already enchanting experience.

Summing up our day, the excursion to Woodland Park Zoo turned out to be an exquisite blend of enlightening encounters and unadulterated entertainment. Our hearts brimmed with cherished memories, and our understanding of the astonishing diversity within the animal kingdom had grown profoundly. This unforgettable day was a testament to the power of collaboration between REWA and WPZ in shaping the Nature Play curriculum. Together, they orchestrated an event that seamlessly blended education with enjoyment, leaving an indelible mark on all who were fortunate to partake in it.

Exploring the Heart of Community and Passion at Lake City’s Grocery Outlet Store

A memorable field trip led by ReWa Lake City recently took us to the heart of our community, where we discovered the hidden gem of the Grocery Outlet Store. Owned and operated by the inspiring Renee, this local establishment has become more than just a grocery store; it has transformed into a thriving community hub that fosters a sense of belonging and empowerment. During our eye-opening visit, we not only learned essential grocery shopping skills but also witnessed firsthand the power of passion and dedication in turning dreams into reality.

Renee’s story is one of courage and ambition. After dedicating fifteen years of her career to a store in California, she took a leap of faith and moved to Seattle to embark on a life-changing journey. With unwavering determination, she acquired the Grocery Outlet Store, turning it into a symbol of her passion for community and quality products. Witnessing this transformation was truly inspiring and left us in awe of the possibilities that lie ahead when one follows their dreams with dedication.

During our visit to the Grocery Outlet Store, we were granted exclusive access to the inner workings of the store. From the bustling warehouse, filled with fresh produce and essential products, to the well-chilled freezer, where perishable items were stored, we gained insight into the meticulous processes that ensure the store’s shelves are always stocked with the finest goods. The experience not only gave us a glimpse into the operations of a thriving grocery store but also reinforced the importance of choosing healthy food options like fresh fruits for our well-being.

One of the most empowering moments of the trip was when we were taught how to navigate the checkout process on our own. This hands-on experience not only instilled a sense of independence and responsibility but also provided us with valuable lessons in practical life skills. As we scanned our selected items and saw the total amount appear on the screen, we realized the significance of budgeting and the importance of making conscious purchasing decisions.

When we had the privilege of conversing with Renee, her passion for the store’s sense of community was evident. The Grocery Outlet Store had transcended its role as a mere commercial entity; it had become a gathering place for the local neighborhood, where people came together to connect, support each other, and build lasting relationships. Renee’s commitment to fostering a tight-knit and supportive community was truly commendable, and it left a lasting impression on all of us.

Our field trip to the Grocery Outlet Store, owned by the remarkable Renee, was an enriching experience that not only taught us valuable grocery shopping skills but also allowed us to witness the transformational power of passion and dedication. Renee’s decision to follow her dreams and create a community-focused establishment has not only enriched the lives of those she serves but also left a lasting impact on our hearts. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to Renee for warmly welcoming us into her store and for sharing her wisdom and passion with us. This unforgettable experience has taught us the value of pursuing our dreams and the importance of building meaningful connections within our community.

Starbucks & ReWA Celebrate World Refugee Day

🌍 A Heartfelt Thank You to Starbucks for Embracing World Refugee Day and ReWA 🙏

On World Refugee Day, we would like to thank Starbucks and Starbucks employees for their incredible support and commitment to welcoming refugees worldwide.

We want to give a special shoutout to Starbucks for graciously hosting a remarkable event at their headquarters and extending an invitation to ReWA. By recognizing the importance of World Refugee Day and partnering with organizations like ReWA, Starbucks exemplifies the true spirit of corporate social responsibility. We also want to highlight and commend Starbucks as one of the 40 companies that have pledged to hire and train 250,000 refugees across Europe.

As we celebrate World Refugee Day, let’s stand in solidarity with refugees, recognizing their strength, resilience, and immense contributions to society.

Here are some facts about World Refugee Day:

  1. Purpose: The main objective of World Refugee Day is to honor the courage, resilience, and strength of millions of refugees who have been forced to flee their homes due to persecution, conflict, or violence. It aims to raise awareness about their situations and promote empathy and support for their needs.
  2. United Nations: World Refugee Day is an initiative of the United Nations. It was established by the UN General Assembly in December 2000 through Resolution 55/76 to be observed annually starting from 2001.
  3. Theme: Each year, World Refugee Day has a specific theme that highlights different aspects of the refugee experience. The theme often focuses on issues such as education, health, employment, or the specific challenges faced by refugees in different regions of the world.
  4. Global Observance: World Refugee Day is observed in numerous countries around the world through various events, including art exhibitions, film screenings, panel discussions, cultural performances, and fundraising activities. These events aim to promote understanding and solidarity with refugees.
  5. Global Refugee Crisis: According to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), there were 82.4 million forcibly displaced people worldwide by the end of 2020, including 26.4 million refugees. This represents a staggering number of people who have been uprooted from their homes.
  6. Refugee vs. Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs): While refugees are individuals who have fled their home countries due to a well-founded fear of persecution, IDPs are people who have been forced to leave their homes but remain within their country’s borders. World Refugee Day also acknowledges the struggles faced by IDPs.
  7. Protection and Support: World Refugee Day highlights the importance of protecting and supporting refugees. It calls upon governments, organizations, and individuals to uphold the rights of refugees, provide them with humanitarian assistance, and work towards durable solutions, including voluntary repatriation, local integration, or resettlement.
  8. Refugee Contributions: Refugees have made significant contributions to the cultural, social, economic, and scientific fabric of their host communities. World Refugee Day seeks to recognize and celebrate the resilience, skills, and talents that refugees bring to their new homes.
  9. Advocacy and Awareness: World Refugee Day serves as a platform for advocacy and raising awareness about the challenges faced by refugees. It aims to combat misconceptions, dispel stereotypes, and promote a more empathetic and inclusive society that embraces refugees and their contributions.
  10. #WithRefugees Campaign: The UNHCR leads the #WithRefugees campaign, which urges governments, communities, and individuals to show support for refugees by signing a petition that calls for equality, dignity, and respect for refugees. The campaign aims to mobilize global solidarity and generate political will to address the refugee crisis.

World Refugee Day provides an opportunity for people worldwide to stand in solidarity with refugees and work towards a more compassionate and inclusive world.


ReWA Is A Classy Awards Winner

Today, we are excited to announce that ReWA is a 2023 Classy Award winner in the Social Innovation category. We’re proud to share that our Domestic Violence Program is recognized for its contribution to helping refugee and immigrant women and families.

About the Classy Awards

Classy, an affiliate of GoFundMe, is a Public Benefit Corporation and giving platform that enables nonprofits to connect supporters with the causes they care about, is celebrating 10 years of the Classy Awards. The Classy Awards is one of the largest nonprofit award programs recognizing excellence in impact and innovation. Now in its tenth year, the initiative brings together groundbreaking nonprofits and impact leaders to honor the achievements driving lasting change around the globe. Determined by the Classy Awards Leadership Council, which is comprised of trailblazing organizations in their own right, such as The Trevor Project, Doctors Without Borders, and Shriners Hospitals for Children; this honorary board evaluates nominations from thousands of organizations addressing challenges around the world. 

Winners were determined by the Leadership Council, an honorary board of social sector leaders, with representatives from organizations such as Jane Goodall Institute USA, The Salvation Army USA, and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. 

GiveBIG to Ukrainian Refugees in 2023

This GiveBIG, ReWA’s goal is to raise $100,000 to increase our capacity to remove barriers to housing, education, legal status, and employment for 200 Ukrainian refugees. By giving to ReWA this GiveBIG, you can help provide critical support to clients such as Ukrainian refugee Liudmyla. ReWA client Liudmyla’s dream in America was simple: build a foundation upon which to improve her life through work.

After traveling thousands of miles, first to Poland and then to the United States, bringing only a suitcase, Liudmyla was determined to make her dream come true. With the help of a ReWA case manager, Liudmyla connected with an employer in Federal Way, Washington, who recognized her skills and capabilities.  Despite initial language and cultural barriers, Liudmyla remained focused on her goal of becoming self-sufficient. After showing a strong commitment to her employer, she has been given advanced opportunities.

Liudmyla’s journey is a testament to the strength of the human spirit and the power of community support. As Liudmyla says: “never wait to act, be happy, and do good now.” Liudmyla attributes much of her success to ReWA. She regards ReWA as her second family and expresses gratitude for the emotional and practical support she has received. By receiving wraparound services that help in all areas of her life, she has been able to acclimate herself to the American way of life.

Please give today so ReWA can house, employ, train, and apply for legal status for 200 Ukrainians this year.

Mahnaz Eshetu, Executive Director