On a Saturday morning when many like to
sleep in, volunteers from Pittsburgh Regional International Student
Ministries (P.R.I.S.M) were busy getting ready for their annual
furniture garage giveaway to more than 200 international students
mainly from India and China who gathered at the Bellefield
Presbyterian Church in Oakland between 8:45 a.m. - 2:45 p.m.
Scott Boyd, the Director of P.R.I.S.M was
very excited for this years turnout and donations.
"It [Turnout for our annual furniture give
away] seems to grow every year by 25-50 students through word of
mouth because those blessed by it would be connected with new
students from their country.", said Boyd.
International students from the University
of Pittsburgh [PITT] and Carnegie Mellon University [CMU] who were
interviewed found out about the event through their seniors, through
Pitt's Office of International Services, CMU's orientation, Chinese
Students Scholars Association, P.R.I.S.M, and Pittsburgh Chinese
Boyd expressed the sentiments of many of
"People are surprised by the generosity of
local Pittsburghers. We probably had 22 churches give items and also
individually. We had 56 volunteers this year and had 25% more
volume. It was the biggest annual furniture give away to date."
Sarah Amanfu, an international student from
Ghana said, "The day before I bumped into Scott and he gave me info.
It's been a blessing."
Students were so thankful for not only the
furniture and household items but for the free rides and home
delivery of the items. Most items claimed were couches, sofas, beds,
dining tables, T.V's, microwaves, and other electrical appliances.
Yifan Wang, an international student from
China stated how thankful he was for the generosity of the church
because his items would be so helpful to him and his roommates that
he wanted to give back in the future for P.R.I.S.M's generosity.
Boyd interacted with students as they
waited with their furniture as Pastor Sandeep Thomas and Adrian
Ciganic also of P.R.I.S.M ministries loaded trucks with the
P.R.I.S.M ministries wants to reach
international students with the love of Christ and be a home away
Watch a musical slideshow of Indian and
Chinese international students who are excited with their freely received
items. There will be a background religious song in Telugu and
Chinese during the slideshow.
Watch the screen for the video. You can
replay clicking on the right mouse button.