On Friday, February 15, Coral Gables Congregational United Church of Christ, Refugee Assistance Alliance (RAA) held their Taste of Syria Event, sharing SOURFA with their Miami community. The event was a huge success! Among the 19 refugee families they work with, 12 families came to the event to participate in the community meal and watch the Soufra. RAA serves the greater Miami area, facing a difficult challenge to bring everyone together due to the distance and resources needed for travel. RAA founder, Kristen Bloom, was extremely touched by the attendance, "We were blown away that more than half of the families made the journey to attend." A journey worth taking as everyone left the film touched and inspired. After the film, one woman shared with Kristen, "I could do that!". Another one expressing how she wanted to open a restaurant after seeing Miriam's story, and many more women noted the need to really buckle down on their studies. All in all, a powerful event that broke bread with the RAA community as they shared stories, passion, and connection.
RAA was founded by Kristen Bloom, with a mission to help displaced persons lacking a support network navigate life in the United States, primarily through in-home english tutoring and community events. Through their services, they have helped many reach full integration into their new lives by developing the means necessary for self-sufficiency.
RAA’s Taste of Syria fundraisers are a testament to how a community can come together to help those in need. The refugee women of RAA are the chefs behind all of the traditional Syrian food. These events are designed to educate the community on the reality of the hardships that refugees face every day, providing a space where stories are shared, shifting perspectives through understanding and compassion. Showcasing culture while building the bridge between the two, fostering connection.
With a long term goal for the Taste of Syria events to transition into a full-time catering service provided by the Women of RAA, Kristen couldn’t have come across Soufra at a better time. When she saw what Mariam and the fellow refugee women were doing she felt more compelled than ever to share it with all of RAA. Hoping Soufra resonates in a way that touches hearts, empowers dreams, and sparks further discussion on how the community can continue their efforts to create a home for everyone.
Following the screening will be an interfaith dialogue facilitated by Coral Gables Church of Christ. LOVE WINS! wouldn’t be possible without their generosity, as they have compassionately opened their doors, teaming up with RAA to host this event.
All donations and proceed will be used to continue RAA’s services such as their English language tutoring for families, online school tutoring for youth, and efforts to further advance the transition to life in their community.
Special thanks to Eric Harr for making this screening possible with his generous sponsorship.
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