LIRS Receives $10K Grant from Wheat Ridge Ministries for Immigration Detention Visitation Ministry

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We are grateful for this piece of good news: Wheat Ridge Ministries has awarded LIRS a $10,000 grant to expand and develop our Immigration Detention Visitation Ministry!

The grant will allow us to build on the fast-growing enthusiasm and interest that congregations, community organizations, and faith groups are devoting to immigration detention ministry.

The $10,000 grant expands a funding pool provided by Wheat Ridge Ministries, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod, and the Presbyterian Church (USA). LIRS has administered $500-$2,000 sub-grants to 26 local ministries (click here for list) to offset visitation costs, fund awareness-building, and meet other needs identified by partners.

Thanks to Wheat Ridge’s generous help, we’ll be able to keep up the training, support, and grant management activities through which we maximize our partners’ impact and accompany individuals in immigration detention.

Wheat Ridge Ministries provides start-up funding and resources to inspired leaders in congregations and non-profit organizations beginning new and innovative human care initiatives. They focus on improving personal wellness of the body, mind, and spirit. Currently, more than 50 Lutheran-affiliated ministries world-wide are receiving assistance through Wheat Ridge.

Here’s what Brian Becker, Vice President for Ministry Programs at Wheat Ridge, told us:

Wheat Ridge Ministries is excited to be able to support LIRS and its Immigration Detention Visitation Ministry. We have a long history of partnering with LIRS to work with and through Lutheran congregations developing innovative programs to assist immigrants and refugees. The Immigration Detention Visitation Ministry will go a long way to bring hope and healing to those being held in immigration detention.

And here’s what our friend and local partner Sally Pillay, Program Supervisor of First Friends/IRATE, says:

Wheat Ridge Ministries’ grant has allowed us to provide more visitation for immigrant detainees, and enabled us to recruit and mentor around 30 more volunteer visitors. It has also allowed us to partner with St James Lutheran Church in Newark and the Lutheran Church of Elizabeth, which is offering us space for our office.

With the grant, we are hoping to build relationships with other Lutheran churches to raise awareness in the community and further increase the number of volunteer visitors that reach this population, which is very vulnerable.

We’re extremely thankful for this grant from Wheat Ridge, and for the great work of our local partners and their immigration detention visitation ministries!

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