Conversations with REP

I’ve been working with the Refugee Empowerment Program for several months now. I’ve written an article as well as run a fundraiser to support them. As this project is coming to a close, I wanted to share a piece of a conversation I had with Ruth Lomo and Jesika Davidson. Ruth Lomo is the founder of REP, and Jesika Davidson is one of the program leaders.

I interviewed them on February 6th with the goal of gaining a better understanding of REP. This would help me as I continued to fundraise and reached out to different churches about the Refugee Empowerment Program’s work as well.

Today I want to focus on one of the most important things I gleaned from this conversation: the genuine love in the REP community. When I asked Jesika what REP’s most successful program is, she replied that there isn’t one most successful program and that REP is a whole that cannot be cut into pieces. When asked how Jesika saw herself adding or contributing to REP’s mission, she said that she just helps whoever she can whenever she can regardless of whether the person is a student, adult, or staff member because “we’re a team” and should help each other no matter what.

I was very inspired by Jesika’s perspective of the REP community. Even outside of a non-profit, having a community and supporting it is extremely important. In high school, it is important to have a community to fall back on if you need help with schoolwork for a multitude of reasons – you’re working on a project but can’t work on all aspects at once, you need a refresher on something, you missed class, you need to bounce ideas off someone, etc. In life, it is also important to have a community to fall back on- when you’re stressed out, if you need a break, if you want opinions, if you just need to talk, etc.

This idea that we’re all a team and should help each other out no matter what is motivating and important. The team mentality is something we should implement in our own communities. We’re here to help and support one another in times of need- whether we are refugees in a new country or just students getting through high school.

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