Alysia Davies is originally from Georgia and has lived in Harrisonburg for the past ten years, eight of which in downtown Harrisonburg. Davies explains, “One of the things I love about Harrisonburg is how connected you feel.” She continues, “I love Harrisonburg more than any other place I’ve ever lived.”
When the photograph of Alan Kurdi came into light of the world, some people decided to step up and do something. One of those people was Alysia Davies. The brutal reality of refugees’ struggles inspired Davies and her friends to take action towards solutions.
Rocktown Rallies was formed during living room meetings and now works with the Church World Service, a Harrisonburg based refugee resettlement office. Last September, Church World Service took in 60 refugees and in response, Rocktown Rallies threw a welcome party for people to smile and interact, even if language was a barrier. Rocktown Rallies and Embrace Relief set out to collect extra articles of clothing for refugees in Turkey and Harrisonburg delivered by donating 1,000 blankets and 800 coats. Today, Rocktown Rallies works with helping to staff Church World Service in its efforts to integrate refugees into Harrisonburg and the United States. These tasks that Church World Service primarily addresses include helping the refugees to find jobs in the community and bringing people to doctor’s appointments.