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Grande Prairie Rotarian looking to support refugees

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A local Rotarian is rounding up Grande Prairie residents interested in learning more about how they can help with the refugee crisis in Europe. Kevin Hilgers says he feels Canadians are ready to welcome refugees, but don’t know how to make it happen.

“I bump into people in my social circles and we all kind of ask the same questions: how can we help and is it possible even? The more I learn, the more I find out that it can be done; it’s a commitment and there’s a commitment of money as well, but it can be done.”

Hilgers is travelling on a Rotary exchange to Turkey next month and hopes to learn more about the Syrian refugee crisis. He believes it’s an issue that Canadians can connect with.

“I think that we all realize that if not me or you, it’s our moms and dads or grandmas and grandpas that were all immigrants at one time in this country. We want to keep the gates open and we want to be able to, where appropriate, allow more into our country because we’re blessed with a lot of gifts in Canada.”

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An information session is being held at the Rotary Community Room at the Grande Prairie Public Library from 7 to 8 p.m. next Tuesday, September 29th. A former visa officer with Immigration Canada will be on hand to help explain how to sponsor a refugee as an individual or group.

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