Conflicts around the world have forced 16.7 million people to flee their homelands due to persecution – harassment, threats, abduction, or torture, because of their race, religion, nationality, sexual orientation or political opinion.
Over and over we have seen that, despite these traumas, refugees are brave, resilient, and resourceful people. Despite having typically left everything behind - including homes, jobs, and savings – they find ways not just to survive but to thrive. But they cannot do it alone.
HIAS is the only Jewish organization whose mission is to assist refugees – whoever they are and wherever they are.
Around the world, we help refugees find safety and freedom and regain control of their lives. Our work is guided by our Jewish values and our historical experience of forced migration.
For the vast majority of refugees, the only viable option is to remain in the country to which they first fled, living for years and even decades on the margins of foreign cities or in refugee camps. For these people, HIAS provides a safe environment in which they can heal, stabilize, and rebuild their lives.
We also aid those who are too vulnerable to remain in their host country, those who remain at risk of violence even after having fled the immediate threat: women who are heads of households in cultures where men traditionally serve as protectors, children who are vulnerable to trafficking and exploitation, and persecuted LGBT persons.