News and Events
Welcoming the Stranger: Winner of the 2019 Renewal Awards
Welcoming the Stranger Featured on PBS
The 17th annual International Dinner
About 300 students, teachers, volunteers, and supporters of Welcoming the Stranger gathered together on October 21st 2017 to celebrate Welcoming the Stranger's work in the community with immigrants and refugees. Thank you for joining us for an amazing night!
A Very Successful Clothing Drive!!!
Nearly 2,000 bags of clothing were collected to benefit Welcoming the Stranger! We were blown away by the support. Thank you to everyone who helped by donating, collecting, sorting, and loading in the clothing!
Welcoming the Stranger Named One of the Best in Bucks, Executive Director Named a Top Ten Mover and Shaker
We were proud to celebrate Welcoming The Stranger's awards at the BucksHappening bash on May 4th, 2017. It is an honor to be named one of the best charities in Bucks County, and to have our Executive Director named a Top Ten Mover and Shaker in Bucks County.
To read more about the award, click here:
Top Ten Movers and Shakers of Bucks County
Job Search Workshops Offered by Welcoming the Stranger
In partnership with BARC Developmental Services, YWCA at Aspen Grove, and the First Presbyterian Church of Warminster, Welcoming the Stranger held two workshops in March 2017. About 30 workshop attendees learned about tips for job searching in America, interview skills, and some cultural differences when applying for jobs in the U.S. Attendees were made aware of local job opportunities, and even got to meet an employer and get some inside information on jobs in the community.
The 16th Annual International Dinner
On October 22nd, 2016, over 200 guests attended Welcoming the Stranger's Annual International Dinner. Food from over 30 countries was served. View our full album here.
Welcoming the Stranger's Executive Director Meg Eubank
named one of 2016's Emerging Leaders
of Bucks and Montgomery Counties
"In my work with people from all over the world, I've learned that in many ways we are way more alike than we are different." We are proud to announce that our Executive Director, Meg Eubank has been named an Emerging Leader of Bucks and Montgomery Counties for her work with Welcoming the Stranger. Watch the video and read the article in the Bucks County Courier Times and The Intelligencer.
Yardley Peace Festival, Sunday, September 18th, 2016
Welcoming the Stranger had a wonderful time at the Yardley Peace Festival on September 18th in Yardley, PA. Welcoming the Stranger co-sponsored this wonderful event with the Interfaith Community of Lower Bucks, The Peace Center, and Khalsa Healing Arts Center.
Thanks for joining us for fun music, family activities, local exhibitors, and a vegan potluck. Visit www.yardleypeacefestival.com for more information.
View photos here
Buckingham Friends Peace Fair
On Saturday, September 17th, 2016, Welcoming the Stranger exhibited at the Buckingham Friends Peace Fair. Thanks for coming out!
Visit www.peacefair.org for more information about events and exhibitors.
View photos from the fair here
Voices of Reason Symposium
Welcoming The Stranger was pleased to take part in a symposium addressing intolerance, in partnership with Pearl S. Buck International, Bucks County Human Relations Council, The Peace Center, ICLB, and Zubaida Foundation in May 2016. It was a wonderful night of dialogue from diverse perspectives held at Pearl S. Buck International. The panel consisted of Danny Goldsmith, Holocaust Survivor, Numan Dugmedoglu, Turkish-American student, Mira Nakashima, Japanese Internment Camp survivor, and Jacob Bender, Executive Director of CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations).
View photos of the event here
Bucks County Agency on Aging
Loretta Osbourn Volunteer Site of the Year Award
Welcoming the Stranger is the proud recipient of the Loretta Osbourn Volunteer Site of the Year Award, given to an organization that provides a positive experience to its volunteers. View photos from the May 19, 2016 recognition ceremony below. Thank you to the Bucks County Agency on Aging and to all of our volunteers for their dedication and hard work!
View more photos here
Janessa Gans Wilder
of the Euphrates Institute
On April 20th, 2016, the Interfaith Community of Lower Bucks, The Peace Center, and Welcoming the Stranger hosted a discussion of bringing peace to our global community by former CIA Operative, Janessa Gans Wilder of the Euphrates Institute.
Click HERE to read press coverage of the event
and HERE to see a video clip of the the talk.
Welcoming the Stranger named one of the
Best in Bucks County!
In April 2016, Welcoming the Stranger was named a finalist on the Bucks Happening List, a list of all the most "happening" community services and resources in Bucks County.
Off-Broadway Play Benefits WTS:
In January 2016, the off-Broadway play Sanctuary by local actress Susanne Sulby was held, in part to benefit Welcoming the Stranger. As a supporter of WTS, Susanne Sulby made available discount tickets to the show, and in addition a $5 donation will be made on their behalf to Welcoming the Stranger. A group from Welcoming the Stranger attended the play and left feeling moved and inspired.
Sanctuary is a powerful piece, a collage of real letters, poems, journal entries and original writing about the experience of war in different cultures, linking the shared experiences of humanity grappling with the realities of war from all perspectives. Susanne Sulby is a masterful actor, able to portray multiple characters and move between them seamlessly. Her work spoke to us strongly at Welcoming the Stranger, and left us feeling inspired to do good in the world, and hold a sanctuary in our hearts where peace is possible.
Find out more at http://www.sanctuarytheplay.com.
Welcoming the Stranger in the Huffington Post
Click here to read about Welcoming the Stranger in the Huffington Post! We were pleased to be interviewed by Stephen Seufert of Keystone Catholics for a piece in the Huffington Post, published December 29, 2015. To find out more about the great work Keystone Catholics is doing, click here.
Welcoming the Stranger at Morrisville Winterfest
Welcoming The Stranger had a wonderful time at Morrisville Winterfest on Saturday, December 5th, 2015. We were able to share our work with the community and connect with new students. Artists and crafters sold gifts, local groups and schools put on performances, and we even got our photo taken with Santa and Mrs. Claus!
United for Peace
On Friday, November 20th, Welcoming the Stranger was among several area organizations who sponsored a Peace Vigil to promote global peace and unity in Doylestown, PA. View more photos from the event here.
On October 17th, 2015 nearly 200 guests attended
Welcoming the Stranger's
15th Annual International Dinner!
The International Dinner is our very popular annual event where students prepared international food from over a dozen countries to share with Welcoming the Stranger supporters. This year, Welcoming the Stranger honored Bucks County Community College for the college’s partnership with meeting the needs of our students in the community. View photos of the event here.
International Day of Peace
On Sunday, September 20th, 2015 Welcoming the Stranger joined the Interfaith Community of Lower Bucks, Khalsa Healing Arts Center, and the Peace Center along with other area organizations to celebrate the International Day of Peace at Buttonwood Park in Yardley, PA. View photos from the event here.
Welcoming the Stranger's Executive
July 2015 - Welcoming the Stranger has announced the retirement of Rev. S Sturgis Poorman, Jr. as Executive Director after 16 years of service with the organization. Meg Eubank has been selected to fill the vacancy left by Sturgis upon his retirement on July 1st, 2015.
Welcoming the Stranger was founded by Sturgis Poorman in 1999. The mission of Welcoming the Stranger is to provide free educational opportunities to immigrants and refugees in the United States by offering free English, computer skills, and U.S. citizenship preparation. Sturgis began his career as a pastor in Washington County, NY, then traveled to Zimbabwe as a missionary. He served for 12 years as pastor at First Presbyterian Church of Phoenixville. In 1999, Sturgis partnered with Al Krass of Lower Bucks Center for Church and Community to launch Welcoming the Stranger. The organization gained nonprofit 501(c)(3) status in 2008. Since 1999, nearly 3,000 students from 98 different countries have been served by Welcoming the Stranger, through classes held throughout Northeast Philadelphia and Bucks County in Bensalem, Langhorne, Levittown, Morrisville, Newtown, and Warminster. Welcoming the Stranger is grateful to Sturgis for all of his years of service and dedication to the lives of those touched by Welcoming the Stranger’s classes.
The incoming Executive Director, Meg Eubank, has worked with Welcoming the Stranger since 2011 in the various roles of Morrisville Coordinator, Board Member, and now Executive Director. A life-long resident of Bucks County, Meg has a broad range of experience working in the field of education with everyone from kindergarten students to adult learners. Meg has worked as a college Tutoring Center Supervisor, a college ESL Instructor, a nonprofit coordinator, a professional tutor, a high school English teacher, and a curriculum designer among other roles. She holds a MA Ed in Language Arts Education, a BA in Elementary Education, a minor in English, and an ESL Program Specialist graduate certificate, all from Arcadia University. Meg has presented on ESL topics at educational conferences and has been published in scholarly journals. She is very excited to carry on Sturgis’ legacy with the program.
The transition was celebrated on Thursday, May 14th at a Founder’s Dinner held at the Radisson Hotel in Trevose, PA. View images from the event here.