CAMP ATTERBURY — Nearly four months after the start of Operation Allies Welcome, which saw Indiana’s Camp Atterbury accept some 7,000 refugees from Afghanistan, the base is set to close its safe haven by the start of the new year.
This success is partially due to a tremendous outpouring by Hoosiers, who Gov. Eric Holcomb said have given 75% of all donations spread across the seven U.S. bases that have housed the resettling Afghans.
When the refugees first arrived, so many people showed interest in donating that the American Red Cross had to issue a statement saying that it didn’t have the staff or ability to process such a volume of donations.
According to Google analytics, the terms “donation,” “Afghanistan” and “refugee” have been trending among Indiana Google users for the last four months.
Holcomb shared on Nov. 23 his excitement about the generous nature of the state.
“Indiana has accounted for 75% of all the donations in these different safe havens … It just shows you what Hoosiers will do in a time of need,” Holcomb said. “When we put the call out, U-hauls come running with supplies, and it’s really made a huge difference in other people’s lives.”
It is because of these and other acts of generosity that the refugees have been relocated so effectively, said David Hosick, the director of public affairs for the Indiana Department of Homeland Security.
For the complete story, see Saturday’s Republic.