Afghan Refugees: How to Help

Afghan Refugees: How to Help

There are currently 55,600 Afghans awaiting new homes in the United States, with a predicted 30,000 more due to arrive by the end of the year.  Assistance will be needed for months to come. The Southern New England Conference will soon offer additional staffing to help connect and support congregations, resettlement agencies, and, ultimately, our new neighbors. as they leave military barracks and seek new homes in our area. We are gathering information in preparation for this work. Is your congregation hosting refugees or planning to? Are you or your congregation unable to host but willing to offer some assistance to churches who are?  Please fill out this SNEUCC form and let us know what you need or what you can offer:  Afghan Refugee Support (

Here are some resources to help you get started.

Informational Resources for Churches Interested in Sponsoring Refugees

Welcoming and advocating for Afghan SIVs and refugees: a toolkit - United Church of Christ.  (Access this information in a Word download.)

Becoming an Immigrant Welcoming Congregation 

Refugees Welcome Toolkit and Resources  

Monthly informational Zoom meetings for individuals and churches engaged in refugee ministry, with Irene Hassan, UCC Minister for Refugee and Migration Ministries and Global H.OP.E.  Sign up for notices:

View the conference video with Irene Hassan, who is coordinating Afghan refugee resettlement for the national UCC. P/C: e@uQdq5p   The UCC recommends that churches work together to adequately support refugees and more effectively interact with resettlement agencies.

Translation service: Language Line (.30/minute, no minimum)

Grant Available to Sponsoring/Hosting Congregations

Rolling UCC Global H.O.P.E. Refugee & Migration Services Seed Grants for Afghan Resettlement:  Global H.O.P.E. Refugee & Migration Services Seed Grant (Afghan Resettlement) ( 

UCC Refugee Employment Savings Matching & Microenterprise Grant: Provides 3-6 months' rent to highly employable refugees, who can use the amount they save to start a business, go to college, or apply for US certification in their career field of origin. Deadline is July 1, 2022.

Benefits for Afghan Refugees

If you are hosting Afghan refugees, or preparing to, this information about available benefits and how to apply might be helpful (though if working with a local agency, they are likely to take care of this for you).

Benefits for Afghan Humanitarian Parolees

Refugee Resettlement Agencies

Is your church ready to sponsor refugees? Here is a list of the local resettlement agencies for the SNEUCC area. Please note that these agencies may be overwhelmed right now.

If you are unable to reach a local agency, you can try working with Church World Service Afghan Placement and Assistance Program or the Department of State Sponsor Circle Program.

Bridgeport:    Connecticut Institute for Refugees and Immigrants (CIRI)   -  203.336.0141
Hartford:   Catholic Charities Migration & Refugee Services   -   860.548.0059 x18
New Haven:   Integrated Refugee and Immigrant Services (IRIS)  -  203.562.2095

Metrowest:  Jewish Family Service Of Metrowest   -   508.875.3100
Jamaica Plain:    Refugee & Immigrant Assistance Center   -   617.238.2430
Lowell:    International Institute of New England-Lowell   -   978.459.9031
South Boston:    Catholic Charities -  Refugee & Immigration Services   -   617.464.8100
Springfield:    Jewish Family Service Of Western Massachusetts   -   413.737.2601
West Springfield:    Ascentria   -   413.787.0725
Worcester:   Ascentria    -  774.243.3100
Worcester:    Catholic Charities   -   508.860.2226
Worcester:   Refugee And Immigrant Assistance Center   -   508.756.7557

Rhode Island
Providence:   Dorcas International Institute of Rhode Island   -  401.784.8638
Providence:    Immigration And Refugee Services   -  401.421.7833 x129

Questions? Contact Karen Methot, Program Support Associate, or Rev. James D. Ross II, Minister for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.

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