More than 300 refugees — from Burma, Cuba, Somalia, and Bhutan — settled in Lancaster County during the first six months of 2014; now plans are under way to create a permanent refugee center in the county. The center would be located at Reynolds Middle School in Lancaster; the children of refugees account for 8 percent of the student body there. The Lancaster County Refugee Coalition is overseeing efforts. Lancaster Online reports:
The center, which will have a part-time coordinator, could open with limited services as early as January. Organizers hope to open a full-service center by September 2015 following renovations and additional fund-raising.
“Our reason for being there is to create a welcoming place for refugees and immigrants and help them integrate into the community,” said Gary Hobday, coalition director. “Refugees have a special set of needs, but others who have those needs are welcome and will be served” at the center.
The Rotary Club of Lancaster is raising $100,000 for the project. [Newsworks]