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Afghan families begin arriving in West Michigan

The first families arrived last weekend and arrivals will likely continue through the end of the year.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Families who fled Afghanistan started arriving in West Michigan this past weekend. They are being assisted by resettlement agencies like Bethany Christian Services and Samaritas. 

There are many other local agencies who will help them as they transition. 

13 ON YOUR SIDE's Meredith TerHaar spoke with Matt Clark, the advancement director for the Refugee Education Center in Grand Rapids, to learn more about the work the center does and ways the community can help.

"We are working closely along with the local resettlement agencies to be able to immediately serve the youngest Afghan arrivals that will be coming," explained Matt.

"We will be helping families and students enroll in schools and helping the schools themselves be prepared to best serve the students in the classroom."

Wondering how you can help?

"Visit our website, refugeegr.org/newneighbors," said Matt. "We have a webpage there dedicated to new and up-to-date opportunities to be involved with and support our efforts.

"The second way of course is donations. Our team will be working closely with these schools and families in the weeks and months, and financial support for our team to provide those services will be greatly appreciated."

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