HLS students are actively raising awareness of and providing support to Afghan evacuees living at Camp Atterbury, a military training base for the Indiana National Guard. At its peak, over 7000 Afghans lived in Camp Atterbury while waiting for resettlement across the country.
Under the leadership of Abbey Krulik, Sophie Langfitt, and Leah Heneveld, students organized a booth at First Thursdays in October and November where they shared information about Afghan culture, the Afghan refugee situation, and the mission taking place at Camp Atterbury. They also invited participants to create cards for Afghan children. Over 200 cards were delivered to children and families at Camp Atterbury, warmly welcoming them to the Hoosier state of Indiana. The support for Afghan refugees marks another landmark in long-standing advocacy with the Hamilton Lugar School of Global and International Studies.
Abbey Krulik is a senior at HLS where she is pursuing a double major in International Studies and Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures, as well as a minor in Political Science. Krulik’s education in the Arabic language is supported by both the U.S. Department of Defense Arabic Language Flagship Program and the U.S. Department of Education Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowship.
Sophie Langfitt is pursuing a BA in International Studies and French at HLS, with a minor in International Relations. She focuses her studies on Diplomacy, Security, and Governance. Langfitt’s interests lie in learning how international foreign policy changes the lives of global citizens, cultural understanding, and how various theories of international relations are used to evaluate and rationalize decisions made by politicians and world leaders.
Leah Heneveld is a third-year student at HLS, majoring in International Studies and Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures, with a concentration in Arabic language and minoring in Spanish, as well as studying Pashto. Heneveld works as a Student Ambassador for Indiana University, allowing her to provide guidance to current and prospective IU students.
HLS is mobilizing to provide aid for the Afghan refugees. Jenny Dubeansky, a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Central Eurasian Studies in HLS, collected clothing, diapers, and other donations. She is collaborating with local organizations and personally loading items into trucks to ensure they are delivered to Afghan families at Camp Atterbury. Elliott Nowacky, HLS Military Relations Coordinator, and Joey Bradshaw, program manager for the Language Training Center, made materials with basic Dari, Pashto, Persian language, and cultural information available to soldiers at the camp. HLS departments, student organizations, faculty, and individuals on campus are collecting donations of personal and household goods for refugees.
HLS students are also providing direct support to Afghan evacuees at Camp Atterbury by leading a wide range of activities, under the coordination of Rachel Najdowski, a senior at HLS. Over the course of a week, more than 50 IU students, staff, and faculty offer legal assistance, run crafts, games, and sports for children, and teach cultural orientation classes to adults. These activities have been supported by fundraising efforts across campus, collecting over $1000. Donating materials and funds to support the refugees is also widely encouraged. The refugees primarily need winter clothing: coats, hats, scarves, gloves, long sleeve shirts, and long pants. They also need personal hygiene items and baby care products. Students can drop off donations Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at 2700 E. Rogers Road in Bloomington.
Student achievements and services are nurtured by Hamilton Lugar’s mission to prepare global citizens for the world, provide aid, learn about different cultures, and pave a path to make a positive change in the world. HLS continues to work with multiple local, national, and international organizations in aiding impacted scholars in Afghanistan and those who are resettling in the state of Indiana.