Several refugee families living in Logan received much-needed donations of furniture, bedding and other items on Saturday, thanks to the English Language Center of Cache Valley, the LDS Humanitarian Center and the hard work of local Eagle Scouts.
“We have refugees from Burma, Africa, several different places,” said Katie Jensen, co-director of the English Language Center, which teaches language and other important life skills to immigrant adults. “And when they arrive in our valley, they usually arrive with just what they have on their backs, because they come right out of refugee camps.”
Many of these families lack even the most basic furniture. Some sleep on the floors of their apartments. To address this, Jensen’s organization met with the Salt Lake City-based LDS Humanitarian Center, which agreed to donate beds, mattresses, cribs, tables, chairs, dressers and other household necessities.
Three semi-trailers full, to be exact.
The trucks arrived in Logan on Saturday afternoon, where local Eagle Scouts and their families quickly took charge, unloading the trailers and assembling furniture items in the refugees’ homes.
“I think it’s going to be really fun,” Eagle Scout Ryan Francis said as the offloading began. He and fellow scout Thomas Lundberg spent two months preparing for Saturday’s charity drop.
Ryan’s mother, Angie Francis, who works at the English Language Center, was as excited about the delivery as she was about her son’s involvement.
“I think it’s great, it’s a good experience for him,” she said. “He’s helping a lot of people stay warm and comfortable ... it’s very cold, especially this time of year.”
And their beneficiaries were grateful for the help.
Sabodin, who has no last name, arrived with his family three years ago from Thailand. His son Nolzamar spoke to The Herald Journal both on his own behalf and as an interpreter for Sabodin.
“I feel good,” he said, wasting no time explaining what he thought about no longer having to sleep in the floor. “I don’t have a bed. My brother has a bed.”
Sabodin kept his words simple, direct, and thankful.
“(These) guys came here to help,” Nolzamar translated. “My dad is happy.”