February 19th, 2013
February 4th, 2013
Following Our Strategic Plan
One of the objectives of MORE’s 2012-2015 Strategic Plan is for the organization to increase its’ role in public policy. The board and staff believe that one of the ways we can work towards our mission of empowering people of many races, cultures and ethnic backgrounds to live and work in peace, is to make an impact at the legislative level by advocating for the people we serve and sharing their story.
Whether it’s legislation surrounding issues of poverty, education, immigration, or any other area affecting the immigrant and refugee population, we will work to ensure that the voices of those that are unable to speak for themselves are heard by those that are elected to govern our city, state and country. We will also ask you, our network of supporters, to speak out in support of our constituency.
CURRENT OPPORTUNITY – “Strengthening Refugee Resettlement Act”
We recently became aware of legislation that is very specific to the people that receive assistance at MORE. On February 14, 2013, U.S. Representative Keith Ellison (MN – 05) reintroduced HR 6460, the “Strengthening Refugee Resettlement Act”. The purpose of this act is to increase coordination and provide much-needed resources for new Americans fleeing war, persecution, or natural disaster.
From the Representative Ellison’s February 14th, 2013 Press Release:
U.S. Representative Keith Ellison (MN-05)
“WASHINGTON–Rep. Keith Ellison (MN-05) today reintroduced the ‘Strengthening Refugee Resettlement Act,’ to increase coordination and provide much-needed resources for new Americans fleeing war, persecution, or natural disaster. The bill is being introduced at a time when the momentum for immigration reform is growing. Congressman Ellison will be pushing to ensure that comprehensive immigration reform includes the issues of the refugee community addressed in this bill.
The bill streamlines refugee processing abroad, while taking advantage of that processing time to provide refugees with English classes and work orientation training. It also allows refugees to be admitted to the United States as lawful permanent residents, saving scarce government and non-governmental organization (NGO) resources.
Congressman Ellison states, ‘With Congress addressing comprehensive immigration reform in the coming months, there is no better time to pass the Strengthening Refugee Resettlement Act. This bill makes sure refugee families have the resources they need to be self-sufficient as quickly as possible, and allows families to be reunited with their loved ones. The Strengthening Refugee Resettlement Act not only helps the 34,000 refugees who have come to Minnesota since 2000 by allowing their family members to be granted permanent residency, but improves America’s image abroad.’
This bill is particularly important for Minnesotans. According to the University of Minnesota, Minnesota has historically had the highest number of refugees per capita. Between 1999 and 2007, over 34,000 people resettled in Minnesota, from 30 different countries. Over 50,000 Somalis along – many of them refugees – currently live in Minnesota.”
We hope that you will consider contacting your U.S. Representative to ask them to support HR 6460, the “Strengthening Refugee Resettlement Act”. Please click here to find your local legislator and write, email or call them and ask them to support this very important legislation today!
January 25th, 2013
Please consider joining us this Saturday for the Winter Session of MORE’s Community Education Series. MORE’s new Community Education Series includes quarterly meetings to help staff, board members, volunteers, donors, and friends of MORE have a better understanding of the outside issues that impact the organization as well as the people we serve.
This quarter’s topic is Refugee Resettlement and our special guests include Laura Svoboda, Director of Refugee Services at World Relief Minnesota, and our own Day Wah will be sharing her own experience resettling in the United States.
Saturday, February 9th, 2013
McDonough Homes Community Center
1544 Timberlake Road, St. Paul, MN 55117
10 a.m. – 12 noon
This event is free. Refreshments will be provided and bring your friends!
Please RSVP to Shoua Xiong at firstname.lastname@example.org.
January 25th, 2013
Earlier this month, MORE was chosen to receive $7,500 from a first-time funder, Marbrook Foundation. Marbrook Foundation’s primary interest is in initiatives or organizations providing services to immigrants and refugees in the Twin Cities metro area. MORE’s comprehensive programming was recognized by the Foundation for truly integrating a body, mind and spirit approach to the well-being of immigrants and refugees.
At the end of 2011, Marbrook Foundation’s Trustees voted unanimously to renew the Foundation’s immigrant/refugee focus for another three years. With this renewed focus, the Trustees hope to make an even deeper impact in this area. They have entrusted MORE with this funding to continue the work of providing immigrants and refugees with the resources, knowledge and skills they need to create equal opportunity for themselves as new Americans.
Thank you to Marbrook Foundation!
January 25th, 2013
Please mark your calendars for this year’s
MORE Run for Refugees 5K:
Saturday, June 22nd, 2013
Race begins at 9:30 a.m.
Phalen Lake Pavilion, St. Paul, MN
Further details to follow soon!
December 21st, 2012
MORE’s newest board member is reporter, Boua Xiong of KARE 11, the Twin Cities NBC affiliate station. We are excited Boua has committed to such an important role within our organization. She will bring a very valuable perspective to the governance of MORE.
Boua knows the refugee experience firsthand. In the 1980s, she arrived in the United States with her family at the age of one and says, “Help from an organization like MORE would have been very helpful in my family’s transition from refugees to citizens.”
Boua appreciates how scary and exciting the refugee experience is and she has seen that MORE values where people have come from and is able to bridge the gap and assist new Americans to become part of the community.
We are so excited to have her as part of the MORE family. Welcome, Boua!
November 27th, 2012
From all of us at MORE…Wishing you a safe and peaceful holiday season. Click here to listen to a very special video of the Karen Elders singing ‘Silent Night’.
November 14th, 2012
Every December for almost ten years, MORE has partnered with the Cathedral of St. Paul and other important donors to provide gifts to our newest neighbors. Last year, staff and volunteers were able to serve 240 families (1069 individuals) in just two days at our annual gift giveaway. This year, we will continue our new tradition of focusing solely on those people and families that are already involved in MORE programming. This allows us to increase the number of gifts based on each family’s size.
Whether a fishing pole, blanket, pack of socks, sweatshirt, jacket or anything else that is donated, people are so grateful for their gifts every year. As a MORE teacher described it in an email, “The students are so thrilled to be given gifts for their whole family! They seem to be receiving this as love from all of us which is incredibly moving to witness.”
In order to make this special program happen, we need volunteers. LOTS of volunteers! We have a few shifts each day and we need 4-6 volunteers during each shift. Job duties include set-up, distribution, stocking and clean-up. The distribution takes place in our heated garage. Lunch and Santa Hats will be provided!
We hope you will consider joining us to fill your heart with the gift of giving during this holiday season. To register, please contact Shoua Xiong at email@example.com or 651-487-2728. Here is a list of the shifts that are available:
Saturday, December 15
Sorting and Gift Set-Up
Wednesday, December 19
Sorting and Gift Set-Up
Thursday, December 20
Gift Distribution and Re-Stocking
Friday, December 21
2-4:30 p.m. (Clean-Up)
November 12th, 2012
A Message From Cathy Rucci, MORE’s Executive Director:
Greetings! As you have probably noticed from our communications to you this week, Give to the Max Day begins tonight at Midnight and goes until 11:59 p.m. Thursday night.
Because of a couple of very exciting developments in the last week, MORE has a total of $6,000 available to us in matching funds. We have to raise $6,000 in order for those funds to be donated. Thank you to Bob and Mary Jo Loftus for providing us with $1,000 in matching funds. And also thanks to an anonymous donor that has provided us with an additional $5,000 in matching funds.
Because of the matching donations, all donations up to $6,000 tomorrow will be DOUBLED, as long as we raise the minimum of $6,000. Donating $1,000 will really be like donating $2,000! If MORE raises $6,000 through online donations at givemn.org on Thursday, November 15th, we will actually get $12,000!!
Why should you donate to MORE on Give to the Max Day? Supporting MORE means that you will be supporting services for our newest and most vulnerable neighbors. Most of the people currently being served at MORE through our Basic Needs program, English Language Classes, and Social Services are Karen refugees. St. Paul now boasts the largest population of Karen people outside of Southeast Asia! And MORE is located smack dab in the middle of where they are resettling. We have also recently seen an influx of Bhutanese refugees from Nepal. There numbers are small right now but they are growing.
They arrive in Minnesota with very few possessions, very little knowledge of English, and, very little understanding of American cultural practices. But with all the difficulties and challenges that they have faced and will face, the people that come to MORE are happy to be here, willing and very motivated to learn the skills they need to support their families, and so very appreciative for anything and everything that MORE can assist them with for their new American life.
Not only does your donation support wonderful program participants, it will also support the incredible staff, volunteers and board members at MORE. Their love of the people we serve and dedication to the mission is unbounded and very moving to see in action. I am so proud to be able to support all of these wonderful people in their work. The people of MORE will definitely be one of my blessings that will be counted next week.
Please consider making a donation to MORE on Give to the Max Day. Whether it’s $5, $50, $500, or $5,000, your donation will be very appreciated and put to very good use to make our community a better place for all!
November 12th, 2012
$1,000 Golden Ticket. By partnering with GiveMN—an online giving website for Minnesota nonprofits—MORE will have 25 chances to maximize your gift on Give to the Max Day! By making a donation to MORE on Give to the Max Day, your gift could help us win an extra $1,000 for our work in the community. One nonprofit donor will be randomly chosen every hour to have $1,000 added to their donation. Your chances for having your name drawn for a ‘Golden Ticket’ are greater during times when fewer donations are being made. So calling all night owls and early birds, make your donation early and your name might be chosen to provide MORE an additional $1,000 donation!
$10,000 SUPER-SIZED Golden Ticket. At the end of Give to the Max Day, one donation from across Minnesota will be randomly selected for a $10,000 Super-sized Golden Ticket! Help us increase our odds by making your gift on November 15 by visiting http://givemn.razoo.com/story/Mcdonough-Organization-With-Respect-And-Equality-For-People! If you are concerned that you might not remember to make your online donation on Thursday, click the link above to schedule your donation now, then forget about it!
MORE has $6,000 available in matching grants available for Give to the Max Day. That means that your donation can be doubled! Last year, MORE raised $5,000 and we were so excited and proud. On Thursday, we have the potential to raise $12,000 in one day when(not if) we meet our matching grants. Together,we hope to raise more than $12,000 on Give to the Max Day and we’re counting on your help!
Follow us on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/MORE/106390279382409?ref=hl so you can share in the excitement of the giving day and remember to give November 15.
MORE is one of many nonprofit organizations throughout the state that will once again ask Minnesotans to display their record-breaking generosity by donating to their favorite charities online at www.GiveMN.org during the fourth annual “Give to the Max Day” on Thursday, November 15, 2012.
“Give to the Max Day is a great way for the online community to support MORE.” said Cathy Rucci, MORE’s Executive Director. “Making a donation on our GiveMN.org page is so easy and it means so much to us.” On Give to the Max Day in 2011, 36 generous souls donated $5,000 to MORE. Almost 70% of MORE’s staff donated to the organization that day!
Money donated to MORE will directly benefit our mission of empowering people of many races, cultures and ethnic backgrounds to live and work in peace. This year, MORE has been presented with an especially exciting challenge for Give to the Max Day. If MORE donors give $6,000 in online donations that day, two donors will match that and donate an additional $6,000. That means MORE will have raised $12,000 in one day!!
You can sign-up for our enewsletter to receive updates and reminders that day. MORE’s staff and board are determined to meet if not exceed $6,000. With your help, we can do it!