Nearly 60 immigrant students and their family members attended the first of three Family Fun Nights on Nov. 12 to help them transition to life in Penn Manor School District.
The event, held at Hambright Elementary School, included dinner, bingo, arts and crafts and raffles. Attendees also learned about Penn Manor schools and community services available to them, including medical assistance, dental and eye care and food and clothing banks.
The event was open to any Penn Manor student who has attended a school in the United States for three years or less, and their family members. Attendees were from Congo, Tanzania, Nepal, Dominican Republic, Russia, Turkey, China and Saudi Arabia.
The event was truly a community effort. Transportation was provided by volunteer members of Millersville Woman’s Club and Penn Manor Education Foundation, and bingo prizes were donated by those two organizations, along with the Penn Manor Athletics department.
The presentations were led by Penn Manor social workers, and interpreters were available for those who needed them.
“The goal of the event was to build relationships and togetherness among our immigrant families in the district,” said Wendy Letavic, English Language Development specialist for the school district. “We also wanted to bridge the gap and share what services Penn Manor has for our families.”
The next Family Fun Night is scheduled for March 17 and will include a presentation by CASA, a Lancaster organization that supports immigrants and Latinos.
The final Fun Night, scheduled for May 5, will include a presentation by Church World Service focusing on the naturalization process.
Many thanks to all who made this inaugural event such a success!