WHAT: Partners with other congregations on Capitol Hill to support arriving refugees and has sponsored an individual Afghan family settling in the area.

We invite you to join us as Friends of Refugees and share the challenges of helping a family build a new life. For more information about joining a team, contact Karen Getman or Kim Bayliss.

Since 2016, St. Mark’s has been supporting Afghan refugees resettling to this country. We began as founding members of Good Neighbors Capitol Hill (GNCH).

Our experience inspired us to respond to the evacuation of Afghanistan in 2021 by sponsoring a family who had to flee their homeland and are looking to resettle in this, their new country, with its dramatically different culture. We would welcome your support as we continue our ministry for Afghan refugees. You can help in a number of ways:

1. Provide gifts in kind (GIKs) of gently used furnishings for refugee apartments.

St. Mark’s is one of eight Capitol Hill congregations that make up Good Neighbors Capitol Hill (GNCH), a group that provided Afghan refugee resettlement in Prince George’s County for years. This coalition of congregations has furnished more than 80 apartments with donations from neighbors and friends. We would appreciate donations of used furnishings, kitchen supplies, and bed and bath linens.

Our ongoing resettlement fund for this work is supported by donations as well as gift-in-kind furnishings. Checks can be mailed to the Lutheran Church of the Reformation, 212 East Capitol Street, NE, Washington, DC, 20003; please put “GNCH refugees” on the notation line of your check.

Learn more about the Good Neighbor Program here or contact our congregational representative Karen Getman for more information.

2. Participate on a team to mentor an Afghan family.

In 2021 St. Mark’s initiated an Afghan Refugee Steering Committee to welcome new Afghan neighbors who fled after the chaotic fall of Kabul. In partnership with Christ Church and Lutheran Social Services of the National Capital Area, we developed teams to mentor and assist a single Afghan family as they navigate their new life. The challenges for these families, who experienced a traumatic departure with loss of family and worldly possessions, is unimaginable. But as friends and mentors, we can provide support on many levels, including:

  • Housing
  • Language
  • Employment
  • Transportation
  • Navigating new neighborhoods
  • Medical and social benefits

Our St. Mark’s mentorship of a family is supported by donations as well as team participation. To donate to the Refugee Emergency Assistance Fund that supports this family, follow these steps:

  • Click on this “Donate or Pledge” link on the St. Mark’s website.
  • Then click “Donate Now.”
  • When you see “Fund” on the next screen, scroll down and you will see “Afghan Outreach” at the end of the list.
  • Select and click on “Afghan Outreach.”

We are grateful for your support.