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‘Reverse rummage sale’ benefits asylum seekers

BRATTLEBORO—The Windham County Democratic Committee is looking for donations to its reverse rummage sale to support families in the Community Asylum Seekers Project who are living in the area while they await asylum hearings.

The WCDC has set up a website with opportunities to help, including an appeal for a volunteer with a pickup truck to gather and deliver the donated items the weekend of Feb. 20 and 21 as well as a Spanish interpreter.

Other household items are on the list, at bit.ly/600-casp. Questions about the event can be sent to windhamcountydemocratsvt@gmail.com.

John Hagen, chair of the WCDC, said the idea for the event came out of the National Day of Action on Jan. 18, Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

“We recognized the power of community service for bringing people together in a positive way that affirms our values and that lifts up the nonprofit organizations that do so much good work in our region,” he said.

According to Hagen, the county’s Democratic Party is a large network of people who are deeply committed to serving their communities and upholding a core set of principles.

“Refugees are lawful residents in the state, but their asylum status often results in significant financial hardship. Our event allows us to work in a nonpartisan way to support these asylum seekers while highlighting the work of CASP,” he said.

Since its founding in 2016, CASP has provided basic needs and a supportive community for 17 individuals and families in the process of seeking asylum in the U.S.

It finds local host families for individuals and families seeking asylum, and the organization then supports them with food, shelter, and other daily needs while assisting them in navigating the asylum claim process.

Currently, the group is sponsoring eight asylum seekers in Windham County.

Further information about CASP can be found at caspvt.org.

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Originally published in The Commons issue #600 (Wednesday, February 17, 2021). This story appeared on page A3.

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