The Chicago Welcomes You project originated from a desire to welcome our new Burmese (Karen) neighbors as one would welcome a guest into a home. We decided to use our skills in design and education to create printed informational resources for refugees and those who support them.
Thanks to funding from the Sappi: Ideas that Matter Grant, we were able produce a set of materials for the Karen people in Sgaw Karen and English that will help them adjust to life in their new home. Whether it is sorting bills from sweepstakes offers, bargains from overpriced groceries, or permission slips from report cards, these very limited English speakers are constantly struggling to make sense of this world in which they’ve landed. These materials are designed to creatively bridge the gap and smooth the transition.
In close collaboration with Exodus World Service, we were also able to create a piece for the volunteers who support refugees.
Materials for refugees:
Book: A 94-page, bilingual picture-rich book that provides a more detailed presentation of critical day-to-day information.
Ah Mu Weaves a Story
A beautifully-illustrated bilingual narrative for both children and adults that tells the story of a young family’s acclimation to the United States after migrating from a refugee camp in Thailand.
Materials for those that support refugees:
Welcoming Refugees: Friends Along the Journey
A set of informational and inspirational cards that addresses topics such as cultural adjustment, cross-cultural communication, and suggested activities to do with your refugee friends.
Items will be ready for release on May 1st, 2009. Check back for future translations of First Steps.