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How A Home Sale Empowered Two Asylum Seekers...
Thankful for my client Kathy Crosby. Her home sale generated a donation to one of Chapman Homes non-profit partners, World Relief Seattle, who provides a supportive environment for refugees and asylees (Kwaku and Arafat) see story below) has experienced much, and are now beginning to thrive, and Kathy is now a part of that story! Kwaku and Arafat both came to the United States seeking the protection of political asylum. World Relief Seattle introduced them to Doug & Lisee McGlashan, who welcomed them into their Maple Valley home while they settled into life in the USA. This is a part of World Relief Seattle’s “Cultural Companions” program. Fearing for their lives for different reasons, they both left their country on a plane headed to Brazil where they would begin their journey on foot…all the way up through Central America to the US/Mexico border. It’s there that they asked for asylum.
When I ask them, Kwaku and Arafat have no idea how many miles it was; for Arafat, the journey took about three months, for Kwaku it took four months. Over our lunch at the McGlashan’s they share with us a bit about the journey, naming off the countries they passed through as if it’s a geography quiz: “Brazil, Ecuador, Columbia…” Having made it to the US border, Kwaku and Arafat both began the process of seeking asylum, a process that involves being handcuffed and taken to a detention facility. Both expressed to me their shock around this treatment. Arafat motions to his wrists and ankles explaining how he didn’t imagine that in the US he would feel like a criminal. Through World Relief’s Asylee Resettlement program, they both worked with a caseworker to secure housing, apply for documents and become oriented to their new community. They enrolled in English classes, employment services, and luckily for the McGlashans, were open to meeting other Americans through the Cultural Companion program. Both Kwaku and Arafat now work as security guards at a prominent Seattle security company and balance hectic schedules of night shift jobs and college classes. Kwaku has already been promoted at his job and Arafat was offered a promotion, but in wanting to give the company his best, he declined the offer explaining that he wanted to improve his English before taking on the position. True to the example other asylees have set before them, Kwaku and Arafat are incredibly hardworking and jumped right into the work of rebuilding their lives. Before meeting Arafat, Doug and Lisee had never met an asylee before, let alone fully knew what the term meant. But a formal “cultural companion match” has grown into an authentic relationship.
Matthew Chapman works hard to make your home buying or selling experience enjoyable and gives part of every commission to help a person in need.