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Sponsoring refugees?


So my husband was saying maybe we ought to de-list the apt and sponsor a refugee family instead for the coming year. I’m wondering if it might be better to just donate the proceeds of the AirBNB for a sponsorship which I hear is around 25k in our city. Any thoughts or insights?


Both your and your husband’s thoughts are noble and generous. If you decide to house a refugee family, be sure that you know what you’re getting into, and determine whether you want to put a time limit on the family’s stay.


Chicago - I wish I had some good advice. I’ve thought of this many times the last few days. It seems to me that the two options are dramatically different, and only you know how well you can tolerate the demands of hosting such a family would put on your family. It could be a wonderful experience, could be completely draining, probably a mix of the two.

When we adopted my son, who was 12, (and didn’t speak English)I was scared. to. death. Really really really panicked. It was my faith that kept me going each day of the process - and I truly felt like God was telling me to do it (those of you who are offended by such faith or find it ridiculous, I understand, but please don’t flame me for it in this forum). But at the end of the day, my husband and I said “we can’t do anything about what’s going on in Syria, or the Congo (etc etc) but we can make a difference in this one person’s life”. That was the foundation for the decision we made. (Beyond the faith part)

Please oh please don’t take that as me telling you what to do - just wanted to share my thoughts when thinking of making such a change in our family’s life.

I’d love to hear how the thought process goes - I bet there are forums/FB groups, etc, of people who house refugees!


Hi Deb and Dc,

thanks for your thoughts and insights. DC, you are so totally unimposing and gracious, there is no possibility that I’d misinterpret where you’re coming from. We are a little worried about the dependency dynamics with the sponsored family (esp if there’s understandable resentment on their part about that dependency) so just putting the proceeds of the apt towards a sponsorship would eliminate that issue. But it also feels like we’re safely trying to keep something at arm’s reach. I will def look for a forum and research what this might entail – my husband is picturing a family with young children downstairs and feels it would be such a good use of the space but there are so many factors to consider.

I hope your son and family are thriving! I worked with Korean adoptees (many were adopted at later ages) as a camp counselor and met so many wonderful kids and families. My husband and I have discussed adopting from within the foster system and the thought is both exciting and overwhelming. We would need to wait until our kids are a bit older so we have time to think about it and make plans.


I look forward to hearing about what you decide - it’s all pretty exciting! (Like, standing on the edge of a cliff exciting!)

Thanks, my son is doing well. It’s still a challenge for him, of course, because of the language barrier, and also he doesn’t have many friends - but I also think he’s grateful and happy. Which is a great quality in a kid. ; )


My close family are going to take in a mother and child. They usually use the space on Air but they’re going to put it on hold so these people can have a home. Not sure about any money involved, I didn’t ask about that aspect, but all in all I think it’s a nice thing to do. I mean, if I am forced to flee my country I would really appreciate someone offering me a warm bed.


Wow, that’s great. How long did things take from your family’s interest to the point where a family was being placed with them? The orgs I’ve looked into in my area state that a sponsor provides a place to stay in addition to covering living expenses from 6 mo-year. Would love to hear updates as you get them, thanks so much!


Hey, yeah I’ll keep you posted - the family isn’t with them yet, but they’ve made contact with the local chapter who organize refugee placement. It’s a very slow process, but I’m curious to see what’ll happen!

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