Syrian refugees welcomed with brunch Saturday in Louisville - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Syrian refugees welcomed with brunch Saturday in Louisville

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – Their homes were bombed, lives threatened, and they nearly starved to death.

Now the newest Syrian refugee families have found a safe-haven right here in Louisville.

The refugees from the war-torn country of Syria were welcomed Saturday morning with brunch after living in the United States for several weeks.

“It is not easy to be a refugee. It is not easy to come to America in this way,” said Mirac Ozkir with the American Turkish Friendship Association of Kentucky.

The association, along with St. William Catholic Church, invited the two families to celebrate the growth of the Syrian community in Louisville.

“This is proof that this city is compassionate -- compassionate Louisville,” Ozkir said.

They're showing that compassion after many states' governors said the refugees were not welcome. The announcements came following the Paris attacks that killed 130 people and learning one of the suspects entered Europe among a wave of Syrian refugees.

“It's also important as a community we welcome them and make their adjustment to the community as easy as it possibly can be,” said Peggy Cummins with St. William Catholic Church.

Cummins is also captain of the Syrian Refugee Team. Not only does she want to make assimilation easier for the refugees, but also help Louisville understand who they are.

“These children are refugees. They were in a Jordanian camp for two years. Their home was bombed, they were threatened even in the camp. Their rations were cut to almost starvation,” Cummins said.

Gov. Matt Bevin has spoken out against continued immigration of Syrian refugees, saying he'd like to pause and use a measured approach. Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer has said he wants them to feel supported.

“When we go back like a couple generations, we are all immigrants, we are all refugees,” Ozkir said.

And it's that thinking that has encouraged Cummins to sponsor a refugee family.

“They needed a place of refuge, and Louisville has provided that,” she said.

If you’re interested in becoming a sponsor, St. William Catholic Church says it can help. You can visit the website or call (502) 635-6307.

Copyright 2016 WDRB News. All rights reserved.

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