Leah Mendes Story

For the past two and a half years, I’ve had the gift of serving as a mentor in the Reading Circle program through Refugee Resources Inc. The organization is set in Vickery Meadow, a beautifully diverse refugee community in Dallas. While it’s only a few minutes away from my apartment, it feels like another part of the world. The neighborhood is made of people from many different ethnicities, cultures and backgrounds, and it has a sense of community that is rare to find.

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Alysa Marx
Hunter Goodroe Story

My favorite characteristic about Tika is that he is a kid. Not only in age, but in excitement and character.

Tika and his family are from Bhutan and came to the United States for a better life through a refugee resettlement organization. Tika was naturally guarded when first meeting him. Any question I asked was quickly responded with an “I don’t know” in a way to shrug off an interaction. The spark of being a 5th-grade boy was missing. He was compliant and quiet, most likely attending because of his parent’s hope for his literacy to improve.

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Alysa Marx
Maria King Story

I will always remember the evening I was introduced to my quiet and wide-eyed mentee. He was a small little boy who seemed to be shy, although after moving from the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the United States, a young child like himself had every reason to be watchful as he learned the ropes in this new place. Maybe it was because he hadn’t ever interacted closely with a white adult female, maybe he had a traumatic past haunting him, or maybe it was just because he only knew a few words in English. Coincidentally, I had just moved to the new, shiny, fast-paced Dallas, TX (although my move was not as much of a culture shock as his) and I was grateful for my new little friend.

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Alysa Marx
Kaitlyn Kirkhart Story

Hey family and friends! I want to introduce you to my new friend Snow White. (Or as I call her, Snow!) But first, here’s a little bit of a backstory for ya! 

My friend Rebekah Yates told me about a ministry she served with called Reading Circle. She explained that volunteers are paired with a refugee student to read with them to help them become literate in English and share the love of Christ. At first I was unsure, but little did I know that God had an awesome plan up his sleeve. After praying and thinking about it for a few months, I was ready to jump into what the Lord had planned!

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Alysa Marx
Zach Lind Story

It’s Tuesday night in Dallas.

The Mavericks are playing at the AAC, there’s a concert in Deep Ellum, Uptown is hopping, and lives are being transformed at the corner of Holly Hill and Pineland in Vickery Meadow.

About forty people have gathered together in the same room, but nothing could be more different about this group. We’re from different hemispheres, we speak different languages, but we all look forward to Reading Circle.

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Alysa Marx
Tracey Beckett Story

I have been serving with Reading Circle since May 2015. I think most people who meet Alysa Marx end up serving in some capacity, because her passion for the refugee community and her resolve to partner with them is magnetic and hard to resist. It’s easy to see that she’s a part of something bigger than herself and that she wants to bring you into that as well. I loved Reading Circle for a variety of reasons – it checked so many of my boxes I had when looking for volunteer opportunities.

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Alysa Marx
Emily Walter Story

Over two years ago, I felt distant and disconnected from the people and places in Africa I love and longed for. I had always wanted and planned to live serve in east Africa. A series of health problems and complications rendered this impossible for me. I was heart broken. 

Sick and stuck in Dallas, I started searching for pocket of the world in my neighborhood that I could give my heart to. 

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Alysa Marx