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‘These are our children’

Immigrant_projectCatholic Charities Southwestern Ohio will host screenings next month of “Breathe Free,” a documentary about five refugees living in our state, in observance of National Migration Week.

NMWThe movie, directed by Doug Swift of Zanesville, Ohio, tells the stories of five migrants, two who fled Bhutan and one each from Iran, Somalia, and Syria. The documentary will be shown at the following places and times:

• 5:30-7:30 pm, Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018 at CET Studios downtown, 1223 Central Parkway, Downtown Cincinnati.  The free screening will include a reception and Q&a.

• 4:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Thursday Jan. 11, Xavier University Art Gallery for a $5 donation. The gallery is at 1658 Herald Ave., Cincinnati, on the first floor of the A.B. Cohen Center.

In conjunction with the Xavier screening, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. the gallery will host a traveling art exhibit organized by the Columbus Crossing Borders Project and designed to illuminate the plight of refugees.

(Publicity photo above. A trailer is here.)

crossing-borders-pic-e1511284652238Last week, in a guest editorial for the Cincinnati Enquirer, Catholic Charities Southwestern Ohio’s executive director Ted Bergh called for “clear legal status” in the cases of people brought to this country illegally as children.

“Last September, President Trump laid down the marker of March 5, 2018, for final resolution of the fate of hundreds of thousands of beneficiaries of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program,” the column began. “These young people are known as ‘DREAMers.’ One may disagree with the manner and soundness of rescinding this program, but everyone can agree that is the responsibility of Congress to provide clear legal status for these individuals brought to the United States of America by their parents at a young age. Our elected officials must not fail to get this one.”

He went on to write: “These are our children and this is their home. The special circumstances surrounding this unique population and the obvious benefits they bring deserve a discussion and resolution apart from the more contentious issues that have characterized the immigration for many years.”

The full text is here.

In other news involving the agency, yesterday’s Springfield Sun reported that Catholic Charities’ Second Harvest Food Bank is collaborating with the national Feeding America network to improve distribution to the needy in Clark, Champaign, and Logan counties. That story is here.

Remember that your contribution to One Faith, One Hope, One Love helps feed the hungry, welcome the stranger, and a host of other services.  Here’s how.


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