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236 Kane Street / Brooklyn, NY 11231 / 718 875-1550

Participate in Refugee Resettlement Survey

V’ahavtem et ha-Ger • “You shall love the stranger” (Deuteronomy 10:19)

For the past year, Kane Street Synagogue has been active in supporting and welcoming refugees and asylum-seekers.  As a “Welcome Congregation” with HIAS (Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society), we have participated in activities including public advocacy, pro bono legal defense, English literacy tutoring, translation services, and more. We have helped to rescue, and restore dignity and personal security to men, women and children who were formerly hounded and defenseless.

We write now about an exciting, new possibility for our work in refugee support. HIAS has applied to the State Department to resettle refugee families in New York City. We are still waiting approval but hope to begin receiving families in the late Fall of this year. So, HIAS is now inviting New York City Synagogues to host these families during their first year of resettlement. This activity includes everything from meeting the family at the airport to finding housing to helping the newcomers navigate New York City schools, banks, and transportation.

We do not yet know the identity, nationality or exact arrival date of these families.  However, support systems must be set in place before arrival.  So, as a first step, we are sending to Kane Street members an assessment survey to learn about your interest and resources. If this project is of interest to you, would you kindly take five minutes to complete and submit the survey below.

Refugee Resettlement Volunteer Opportunities

In pre-arrival stage: research available housing, meet with potential landlords and management companies, solicit and store furniture and households goods, set up apartment, after arrival orient family to their new residence.
Help write resumes and look for employment, support family members in interviews and discussions with potential employers, support refugees as they begin jobs.
Connect family to ESL opportunities and other literacy training, research schools for children, support adult refugees in their interaction with children’s school officials; research and help set up extracurricular activities for children and vocational and other courses for adult family members.

Please check the box (or boxes) of any category(ies) in which you are interested in volunteering.

Research and facilitate ongoing appointments and relationships with doctors, nurses, specialists, clinics, hospitals, mental health professionals, dentists, etc.
Manage appeal to raise necessary funds; send thank you letters and other information to donors; manage overall accounting of the project.
Guide and assist the family in supermarket and other shopping, help family get driver’s licenses and auto insurance; research and connect family with other professionals such as lawyers, local governmental officials, translators, etc.
Orient family members to the public transit system; provide your own car for family transportation and shopping needs.
To succeed, this hosting project will need about four individuals who will give significant hours every week, especially during the first three months of resettlement. These core committee members will take leadership roles in organizing and they will be the individuals in regular contact with the family. The expected commitment is from ten to fifteen hours per week.
Our Synagogue will need to contribute $15,000 for the many needs of resettlement.
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