State Rep. Mike Andrade: ‘We welcome these guests with open arms’ at Camp Atterbury
INDIANAPOLIS - State Rep. Mike Andrade (D-Munster) yesterday toured Camp Atterbury, which has served as a temporary home for about 7,200 Afghan refugees since September as a part of a nationwide effort known as Operation Allies Welcome.
During their tour on Thursday (Dec. 2), Andrade and fellow House Democrats, State Reps. Sheila Klinker (D-Lafayette), Chris Campbell (D-West Lafayette) and Maureen Bauer (D-South Bend) learned more about the programming and resettling assistance Camp Atterbury and its fellow state agencies were providing to the refugees. The legislators were also able to see a majority of the resident areas, including the cafeteria, barracks and classrooms.
At Camp Atterbury, Afghan refugees have had the opportunity to take English lessons and workforce development classes to help them resettle. Camp Atterbury staff and other state agencies have also assisted in finding jobs and housing for refugees settling across the nation.
“The work at Camp Atterbury is a fantastic opportunity to give back to those that worked alongside the U.S during the war in Afghanistan,”Andrade said.
“Thanks to the National Guard for their phenomenal work facilitating this resettlement and to Hoosiers for coming together to show love and compassion through their donations. We welcome these guests with open arms and look forward to their contributions to local communities as new community members.”
The Indiana House of Representatives is currently holding a donation drive to benefit the remaining Afghan refugees at Camp Atterbury. New, unbranded items for men, women and children of all ages, including winter apparel, baby clothes, and powder baby formula, are being collected. Items can be dropped off in donation bins outside of the House Chamber at the Indiana Statehouse.