refugeeOur People’s Church Refugee Resettlement Committee welcomed Khaled, Fatema, Adham, Molham, Moayyad, Omar and Abdullah Altyara to America nearly two months ago. We have learned that they fled Syria in 2012 because of the civil war raging in their home city of Hims. They became refugees living in Jordan, until they were chosen to receive permission to immigrate to the U.S. this year. (It is a multiyear process)

Much has been accomplished through the partnership with Bethany Christian Services and People’s Church in getting the family established here. All the family members had to apply for Social Security Cards, State IDs, Medicaid and Food and Cash Assistance. They have had physicals and dental appointments and the three youngest boys have been enrolled in school. Moayyad, age 17 will go to Kalamazoo Central and the twins, Omar and Abdullah, will go to Arcadia Elementary School.

Khaled has been through the Michigan Works PATH 3-week program and is now ready to be employed. While he is looking for a job—with the assistance of Bethany and People’s Church, he is required to volunteer 20 hours a week. He has been working with our Building and Grounds Committee to fulfill some of these hours.


How Church Members Can Help:

Networking to find a job for Khaled. He worked as a water-pump mechanic in both Syria and Jordan. If you, or anyone you know could be helpful in finding a job for Khaled, please contact River Artz-Iffland, 269-254-7795.

Volunteering to work with Fatema and Khaled to understand financial and budget concepts. We currently have a wonderful volunteer, Mike Stoline, who has been working with them. Mike is going to be out of the country for a month starting Sept. 14th. We need a partner for Mike to cover the time that he is away. Please contact Ann Feldmeier 269-720-1649 or Sally Padley 269-372-3943, if you can volunteer.

Helping to plan social events for the Altyara family to meet our church members and other community members.  We especially want to set up an event where our church youth can meet and make friends with the Altyara boys.  Please contact either Sally Padley or 269-3723943 or Ann Feldmeier 269-720-1649 or via email if you can help plan social events.

Make a donation. We are fundraising to cover the additional expenses that continue to come up. Any unused funds will be passed along for support of local refugees arriving weekly.  You can make a donation through PayPal using the button below.  Or send a check to People’s Church, 1758 N. 10th Street, Kalamazoo, MI 49009. Please put “Refugee Resettlement” in the memo line.

There are many opportunities for intergenerational experiences in helping this refugee family get established and be successful. Anyone who is interested in getting their family involved please contact either Sally Padley or 269-372-3943 or Ann Feldmeier 269-720-1649 or via email

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