Nicola: Refugee School Impact Grant Grantee Orientation

A highlight of this past quarter was presenting at the Refugee School Impact Grant (RSIG) Grantee Orientation, where the RSIG grantees convened to kick-off another two-year grant cycle from the federal government. We had convened in June to end the previous year, and that had been my first chance to meet most of the grantees as well as my first chance to introduce them to my resource toolkits for newcomer families and students to the school system.

While I entered the June meetings and its presentation with uncertainty, coming before our partners at the September Orientation was a great moment as I could put finalized products in their hands and share how these resource toolkits, created to have a wide scope and flexibility, could really apply to all their work despite the diversity of their organizations. This time, while also supplying constructive feedback on how best to disseminate the information and on what additional tools could be created in the future, the grantees also gave a lot of feedback and appreciation for the finished work.                             

In their appreciation, all the time, energy and process of sifting and creating over the course of the year was worth it. These products are something the grantees identified as useful. The toolkits will be able to support our partners’ efforts around orientation to the schools as they actively work to support the refugee families and students and the schools that receive them. Gathered there with twenty-three partners representing the ten school districts and almost all of the partner organizations, it was a moment to bring all the pieces of the year together for me and it was an honor to put the toolkits in the hands of the people I had been working to support.

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