St. Mary’s Church in Metchosin hosts a concert fundraiser for a refugee family at 4125 Metchosin Rd. on Sunday, Feb. 23 at 2 p.m. (Facebook/St. Mary’s Metchosin)

Metchosin church hosts benefit concert for refugee family stuck in Thailand

Pakistani journalist forced to flee with wife and daughter after reporting on government corruption

A Metchosin church congregation is using its musical talents to help a refugee family halfway across the world.

Nadeem, whose real name is not shared to protect his identity, is currently in Thailand with his wife and young daughter. They’ve been living in the South Asian country for six years after fleeing Pakistan after Nadeem, as a journalist, reported on corruption in the local government.

The family is represented by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

“I’ve only met them through WhatsApp,” said Heloise Nicholl, a member of the Metchosin Refugee Sponsorship Group. “The [church’s] music leaders came to us with the idea to host a concert fundraiser and we thought it was perfect.”

READ MORE: GoFundMe started for Saanich man and dog found clinging to sinking houseboat

ALSO READ: 100 art pieces donated for fundraiser supporting refugee family new to Victoria

St. Mary’s Church of Metchosin hopes to raise $24,000 by early 2021. The funds will be used for the family to travel to Canada as well as living expenses as they settle. Their GoFundMe page raised $895, as of Feb. 13.

The concert takes place at 4125 Metchosin Rd. on Sunday, Feb. 23 at 2 p.m. Performances include Bach, Chopin, and other classical artists, plus an opera singer. Organizer Alison Marshall says they’ve been preparing for the concert since September.

aaron.guillen@goldstreamgazette.com


@iaaronguillen
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