On Friday, October 29, members of AACRC’s Deacons, Mission Action Team and Social Justice Team had a meeting with representatives from Jewish Family Services to discuss an opportunity to co-sponsor a refugee family from Afghanistan.

The crisis in Afghanistan has resulted in the arrival of 53,000 evacuees in the U.S. thus far with many thousands more expected in the next year. More than 90 individuals have arrived in Washtenaw County in the past 3 weeks. It is expected that about 300 Afghans will be resettled in this area.

Jewish Family Services has resettled hundreds of refugees since 1993. They are the only resettlement agency in Washtenaw County. JFS provides a continuum of services so that when refugees arrive, they can access all the resources they need through one organization. They are launching a new co-sponsorship program with area congregations to help them deal with this large influx of refugees. The time frame for resettlement is about 3 months.

Before committing to a partnership, we will need to assess our congregational capacity in terms of willingness to commit the financial/material support and the time necessary to support the family, while maintaining appropriate boundaries to foster independence.

Please prayerfully consider this opportunity for service. We will be providing more information and ways in which you can participate in the next few weeks.

Barb Fichtenberg

AACRC Point Person, Refugee Resettlement