Open Arms YYC aims to welcome refugees to Calgary

Dec 19 2017, 2:51 am

Mayor Nenshi told Calgarians they need to welcome refugees with open arms, and a new initiative aims to do just that.

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Open Arms YYC was launched as a counter narrative to “the hateful discourse that has surfaced in response to Syrian refugees” coming to the city, according to the group’s Facebook page.

Anyone can participate in the initiative. Take a picture of yourself holding a sign that says #OpenArmsYYC, donate to Doctors Without Borders, and nominate three friends to do the same.

People have been posting their photos to social media since the initiative was launched in late November.

#openarmsyyc

A photo posted by Emma (@emmaaeichel) on

The movement was started by a group of Mount Royal University students. It was originally supposed to be localized on campus, but the movement quickly spread beyond to Calgary.

“With the environment right now, it’s not just about people fleeing their homes, but people fleeing their homes and not everyone is ready for the medical expenses,” MRU student Desdemona Lunz told Metro News.

“We’ve seen the pictures on social media, and this organization just does a wonderful job in providing that much needed relief.”

The group has already surpassed their fundraising goal of $2,500. At the time of publication, the group has raised $3,342.20 for Doctors Without Borders.

If you want to donate to #OpenArmsYYC, click here.