JOPLIN, Mo. — A southwest Missouri group is advocating for a group of people who will soon call Joplin, Missouri their new home.
People met Tuesday at the Joplin Public Library to learn more about the transition. The group responsible is called, “RAISE” — which is located in Noel.
Soon enough — around 50 Afghan evacuees will be making their way to Joplin. Before they call it home — “RAISE” a group out of Noel — is doing what they can to make sure the transition is as easy as possible. While not all may be in favor of the move, one Joplin resident says it’s our turn to give back to them.
“I think what they’ve done for us in Afghanistan, they deserve some help now to get out of that situation and be where they can be safe. And Joplin is a great community, very friendly,” said Marj Boudreaux – Joplin Resident.
“We have affordable housing that a lot of the places, especially the urban cities do not have. We have a family community environment, we do believe most of what’s coming are families,” said Mike Newman – RAISE Executive Director.
But relocating is never easy. That’s why community support is needed.
“Adjusting to a new culture, there’s so many things we take for granted that we just know because we grew up in this culture and so those volunteers can help with that adjustment,” said Rebekah Thomas – International Institute of SWMO Director.
But it’s not just help with culture change — there’s many ways people can help.
“I can help teach a second language, I can help teach people, I would be willing to do some transportation, help people resettle,” Boudreaux said.
Currently, the evacuees are in the states finishing up their paperwork before declaring Joplin their new home. It’s not yet known when they will be in Joplin, but it is expected sometime this month.