Here is a sample letter from an OCRA participant inviting friends and colleagues to get involved. Feel free to use it as-is or borrow from it as you write your own recruiting letter or social media post.

Dear friends,

Refugees have been in the news quite a bit lately. I’ve heard from many of you that you’re interested in supporting refugees and I have a good lead that I’d like to share.

There’s a volunteer group based in the Glebe called Ottawa Centre Refugee Action, or OCRA for short. Their website, called, has lots of detail about OCRA itself, how the refugee settlement process works, and resources for educating yourself about the current situation, so I won’t repeat it all here. But I will say that this group is well organized and growing rapidly. It looks like OCRA will be able to bring in several families at current rates of engagement.

If you want to help, your participation can involve one or all of the following:

  • pledging financial support
  • offering services associated with your own skill sets
  • being a member of a group of about 10 – 12 people who will do the upfront work with a refugee family (setting up a bank account, getting bus passes, moving furniture, etc.)
  • offering to host the family in your house for the first few months

OCRA is a grassroots, volunteer-run organization and they can use as much support and you can give. You can reach them at I thought I’d pass this along just in case you were itching to do something but didn’t have any avenues open to you.