Boise is still grieving from a mass stabbing last Saturday that killed a three-year-old girl, Ruya Kadir, and left eight others injured. The victims are all members of Boise’s expansive refugee community. The tragedy has left many asking: How can we help?
Julianne D. Tzul, Executive Director of the International Rescue Committee in Boise, has an answer to for that question.
She says the biggest thing you can do right now is to donate to IRC. As of Monday morning, she says, they’ve raised about $160,000 to help pay for medical costs, housing, mental health services and other expenses related to the tragedy. According to Tzul, many of the victims did not have health insurance.
She encourages folks to attend a vigil that will be held Monday at 6 p.m. in front of City Hall.
Tzul says IRC has fielded a number of questions about more personal ways to contribute to the victims and their families—dropping off gifts of food or providing housing.
“I would just ask for folks to be patient if a family is going through crisis,” she says. “Part of what we’re trying to do is shield families a little bit … it’s a moment of significant trauma.”
She adds that she hopes Boiseans will continue to make their refugee neighbors and friends feel welcome in the city.
“Casseroles are great, Teddy bears are lovely, but talking to people is probably more important,” she says.
Immediate following the tragedy, three locals started GoFundMe pages to raise funds for the victims. Tzul says IRC reached out to the owners of these pages. As of Monday afternoon, two of the three have agreed to contribute the money they raise to IRC’s fund.
Celeste Dimas started a GoFundMe late Saturday evening after seeing a press conference about the attack. She lives a few miles from the apartment complex where the attack occurred, and she says she drives by it every day on her way to work.
“I was just completely broken and in shock,” she says. She thought about driving down to the complex, but figured she didn’t want to interfere with the investigation. “Sometimes it’s better just not to do anything physically … but I still felt so helpless.”
She started her page around midnight, she says. By Monday afternoon, she had raised $6,998. She says she will contribute the funds she’s raised to IRC.
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