Afghan Refugee Support: Churches Encouraged to Work Together

Afghan Refugee Support: Churches Encouraged to Work Together

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. Some of these individuals and families have and will continue to arrive in the SNEUCC area. Assistance will be needed for weeks and months to come.

The Southern New England Conference plans to offer additional information and resource sessions for our congregation. In addition, we are offering better staffing to support congregations, resettlement agencies, and, ultimately, our new neighbors.

Irene Hassan, Minister for Refugee and Migration Ministries at the United Church of Christ National Ministries encourages churches to work together to better support these refugees as they arrive. Some of our congregations are already hosting or supporting an Afghan refugee or family; others are interested in hosting or providing hands-on help. The SNEUCC can help congregations and individuals connect with one another and with local refugee organizations.

Sponsor Circles, just announced by the Biden administration, is a newly approved way for churches to become engaged in hosting, sponsoring, or otherwise providing help to Afghan refugees. We can help sort out these options.

If you or your church is hosting an Afghan refugee or family and in need of hands-on help with such needs as:
  • Housing
  • Job placements
  • English tutoring
  • Rides to appointments
  • Practical help (driving lessons, how to use public transport, navigating health insurance etc.)
  • Furnishing an apartment
  • Financial help
Or if you are unable to host but can provide these or other services or help, please fill out this form or email Karen Methot with the details. The conference will work to help you connect to other churches and individuals and refugee agencies. We are also seeking a temporary ‘point person’ to coordinate these actions for the conference. Contact Rev. James D Ross II if interested.

Access a toolkit from UCC Wider Missions about supporting Afghan refugees.
Small grants may be available to congregations hosting Afghan refugees to help defray costs. Learn more and apply: SNEUCC Immigration, Refugee and Asylum Task Force small grants.

Photo by Ahmed akacha from Pexels
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