Mayor Presents Van to Immigrant and Refugee Resource Village
On March 20, 2017, Mayor Richard Berry announced that the City of Albuquerque is giving a former Sun Van to assist the Immigrant and Refugee Resource Village of Albuquerque (IRRVA) with their day to day operations. The IRRVA is an organization that serves low or no income, vulnerable kids and families who are refugees and immigrants.
The IRRVA is an unfunded, volunteer driven, non-profit organization in Albuquerque. The goal of this nonprofit is help its participants make a successful transition to life in their new community, including social-emotion, physical, educational, and financial well-being. IRRVA works to ensure that its help its participants make a successful transition to life in their new community, including social-emotion, physical, educational, and financial well-being. This organization was founded by a wife and husband duo, Nkazi and Lungile Sinandile, who are immigrants from South Africa. The Sinandiles founded this program in order to provide a safety net for immigrants, refugees and their families through a variety of programs, resources, and support.
Following weekly repairs and breakdowns, the IRRVA began soliciting donations for a new van in February 2017. Shortly after the IRRVA posted a GoFundMe page the City of Albuquerque’s recently created Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA) took note and started making calls to see how the City could help. The OIRA worked with ABQ Ride and found a 2008 Ford E-450 Series 2800 Van that could be given to this local nonprofit. The former Sun Van was used for paratransit service and was determined to be past its serviceable life, being in commission for eight years, driving 268,656 miles.
Albuquerque’s Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs office opened in 2016. To contact the OIRA office visit www.cabq.gov/office-of-immigrant-refugee-affairs/contact.For more information about the Immigrant and Refugee Resource Village of Albuquerque visit www.irrva.com.