Support LSG at the 7th Annual Ballroom Extravaganza!

Carolyn (in the orange dress) and Blair (in white T-shirt) are learning their Salsa moves with instructor Jimmy Rumba! In five weeks, they will compete against other nonprofit leaders at Savannah’s 7th Annual Ballroom Extravaganza to raise funds for LSG. Here are ways you can join them in supporting LSG:

1) Visit Carolyn and Blair’s Crowdrise page today to make a donation. Donations received on this site will go towards the votes for Carolyn and Blair during their dance routine on the evening of the event and other incidents. Ballroom dancing is not only competitive but expensive.

2) Write a check in the amount of your choice to Lutheran Services of Georgia. Mail it to: LSG, 100 Edgewood Ave., Suite 1800, Atlanta, GA 30303 or hand deliver it to Terri Medina (Atlanta office), Deidre Harrison (Savannah office), or Linda Larson (Savannah office). Don’t forget to include “Ballroom Extravaganza” in the note section.

3) Purchase a ticket (or more!) to attend the event on August 2, 2014. Tickets are $100 per person or $1,000 for a table of ten. LSG will receive 50% of all ticket sales purchased to support us. Seats are limited and tickets will sell quickly, so please purchase yours as soon as possible.

4) Sponsor the event! 100% of sponsorship dollars will do directly to LSG. Please include in the note section of your check or online that the sponsorship is for Lutheran Services of Georgia.

5) Help with our Silent Auction! Do you have a great item or a themed basket you can donate to LSG for the silent auction? All money received from the silent auction is donated back to LSG at 100%

6). If you attend the event on August 2, 2014, you have the opportunity to “vote” for Blair and Carolyn after their dance routine is completed. All donations received as votes are given to LSG at 100%.

Please share this link with your family, friends, and other contacts. LSG needs support from all our friends!

By supporting this event, you are helping LSG raise money for its much needed programs and services. For questions regarding the Ballroom Extravaganza, please contact Terri Medina (tmedina@lsga.org), Deidre Harrison (dharrison@lsga.org), or Linda Larson (llarson@lsga.org).

Thank you for supporting LSG!

Small Actions for Refugees

Eastern Mennonite University students visit a Karen refugee family. Activist and devout Catholic Dorothy Day wrote, “People say, what is the sense of our small effort? They cannot see that we must lay one brick at a time, take one step at a time. A pebble cast into a pond causes ripples that spreads in all directions.” At Lutheran Services of Georgia, we believe that the smallest pebble, the simplest of acts, has the potential to do great good in the world. To help you get started casting pebbles, here’s a list of small actions you can take to support refugees and immigrants throughout Georgia.

1) Tell your story! Share why you serve refugees by emailing Abi Koning at akoning@lsga.org.

2) Go to dinner! Eat at restaurants connected to refugee communities. Some of our favorites in Clarkston are Kathmandu, Shewit Eritrean, and Halal Pizza. In Savannah, local restaurants such as Fire Street Food, Ele, Chive Sea Bar, and Mirage were established by former refugees.

3) Raise your Voice! Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS), our national affiliate, advocates for immigrants and refugees. Visit their action center at http://lirs.org/action-center for simple ways you can raise your voice.

4) Get informed! Watch a movie or read a book about refugees. We recommend: Outcasts United, the story of a refugee soccer team in Clarkston; a PBS America by the Numbers special featuring Clarkston; and Dave Eggers’ What is the What, a fictional book based on the life of a Sudanese Lost Boy who was resettled in Atlanta.

5) Donate to the Clothing Closet! LSG’s Atlanta and Savannah offices operate clothing closets for new refugee arrivals and are constantly in need of clothing and household items.

6) Volunteer with LSG! LSG’s Refugee and Immigration Services department has a number of volunteer opportunities, including tutoring refugees, setting up apartments, visiting immigrants in detention, and more.

7) Learn a Few Words in a Second Language! In our Extended Cultural Orientation classes for newly arrived refugees, there are usually four to six languages spoken. Refugees are trying hard to learn English—why not learn a few words in their languages?

8) Get Your Church Involved! LSG is supported by congregations throughout Georgia. Host an LSG Sunday, celebrate Refugee Sunday, collect donations, or sponsor a refugee family.

9) Celebrate World Refugee Day! Each year on June 20, the United Nations and organizations around the world celebrate World Refugee Day. Mark your calendars and join the celebration! Click here to learn more about World Refugee Day in Georgia.

10) Practice Peace! Conflict is one of the main reasons refugees flee their homes. Seek out ways to promote peace and resolve conflict in your home and in your community.

11) Make a House a Home! Help LSG transform apartments into homes for newly arrived refugees. Donate gently used furniture, household supplies, towels, or bedding to provide refugees with a fully furnished home.

12) Open Your Doors! Sharing a meal brings people together. Invite a refugee family to join you for dinner in your home.

13) Attend LSG’s Breaking Bread and Building Bridges Potluck Dinner on Saturday, June 21! This potluck dinner will bring together church and community members, volunteers, and refugees to share a meal in celebration of World Refugee Day and Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service’s 75th Anniversary! Click here to RSVP or here for a flyer. Please bring a dish to feed four to six people.

For more information on how you can help refugees and immigrants in your area, contact Melanie Johnson atmjohnson@lsga.org (Atlanta) or Deidre Harrison at dharrison@lsga.org (Savannah). To download and share this list, click here.

Our Small Actions were inspired by the Simple Acts & Counterpoints Arts CompanyVisit www.counterpointsarts.org.ukto learn more.

LSG Tees Off at the 20th Anniversary Atlanta Golf Classic

On a gorgeous spring day in May, 57 golfers and LSG supporters teed off at the Atlanta Golf Classic. Held at the Trophy Club of Atlanta, a beautiful and challenging course located in Alpharetta, this year's event marked the 20th anniversary of the annual Lutheran Services of Georgia fundraiser.

After a continental-style breakfast and opening prayer, fourteen foursomes scrambled for first place on the green. The day concluded with a 19th Hole Party featuring cold beer, hamburgers and hot dogs, door prizes, a silent auction, and awards for top players. The competition was fierce but one foursome emerged victorious: Ken Anderson, Bruce Johnson, Mark Olsen, and John Smith, pictured above. John Didcher, Ken Hyde, Mark Moeller, and Frank Pepe followed closely in second place, and Don Derrico, Brown Edwards, Greg Erath, and Mo Tabarrok came in third.

Awards were also given for men and women with exceptional play. Littie Brown and Mike Campbell won trophies for the Longest Drive for women and men, respectively. Julie Miller received the Closest to the Pin award for women and Brown Edwards for men. LSG awarded Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Alpharetta both the John Timpe Participation Trophy for bringing the largest number of golfers and the Bob Ott Memorial Sponsorship award for bringing in the most sponsorship dollars.

Together, golfers and supporters raised over $17,000 and an additional $11,000 in in-kind donations. LSG is grateful for all of the golfers, volunteers, staff members, and sponsors who made this event possible.

To see photos from the day’s activities, visit our Facebook page. Don’t forget to like, tag, and share!