Organization changes name & logo

OSWEGO — Oswego Welcomes Refugees, a community group of faith leaders, educators and professionals, has officially changed its name to Oswego Welcomes New Americans to be more inclusive of Oswego’s diverse immigrant population.

According to Jeff Wallace, chairman of the OWNA Steering Committee, the term “New American” not only includes refugees but immigrants from all over the globe, migrant workers, asylum-seekers, and international students as well.

In addition to the name change, the organization has adapted their logo to reflect the new acronym and name. The “W” in OWNA’s new logo features individuals holding and raising their hands together — Oswegonians and the New Americans they welcome.

“We learned from comments we received from the public that our original name was not communicating our intent to include all people from across the world who make or want to make Oswego their home,” said Wallace. “We wanted to make sure that our name reflected our mission and the diversity of individuals we reach, so the OWNA Steering Committee unanimously agreed to the name change.”

New Americans face challenges in accessing employment, health and education resources, as well as cultural acceptance. Oswego Welcomes New Americans will address the challenges facing New Americans with ongoing seminars, community conversations and other related programs.

“Our vision is to see the Oswego community be open, welcoming and supportive to all people, and from any place in the world,” said Wallace. “OWNA aims to promote positive and welcoming attitudes toward immigrants and refugees within the community, and develop an infrastructure that ensures the successful cultural, economic and social integration of New Americans living in Oswego County.”

According to Wallace, OWNA is currently working on a three-year strategic plan focused on developing programs and conducting community outreach.

Oswego Welcomes New Americans is looking for people interested in building a coalition to bring attention to New Americans and to build a support structure in the area to foster opportunity for New Americans who call or will call Oswego home. For information about OWNA or to be added to the contact list, visit https://woodweb.knack.com/owna-public.

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Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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