Jerusalem Post Spotlights HIAS’ Work

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HIAS “has become known as the U.S. Jewish community’s voice on refugee issues,” mobilizing the Jewish community around the refugee crisis, writes Danielle Ziri in the Jerusalem Post.

Ziri explains that, “to rally Jewish congregations across the United States behind the cause, HIAS has recently established the ‘Welcome Campaign.’ By joining it, the congregations pledge to take action and educate others about refugees, raising money for them, and welcoming them in their own communities. Some 200 congregations across the U.S. have already signed on.”

The story also describes HIAS’ mission as a refugee agency: “to help refugees build a life in the host country where they are, and if that is impossible, help them get resettled somewhere else. The resettlement process includes help with enrolling their children in schools, finding them a place to live, a job, and even putting them on the path to citizenship.”

“It is a core Jewish value to welcome the stranger. Not just to welcome the stranger, but to protect the stranger, to love the stranger,” Rabbi Jennie Rosenn, HIAS vice president of community engagement, told the Jerusalem Post.

“The darkest moments in American history are those moments when we’ve been so afraid that we’ve shut our doors,” Mark Hetfield, president and CEO of HIAS, added.

In addition, the piece mentions the joint Jewish statement on the refugee summit issued last week, calling on the world to “keep their doors open to refugees and to work with international organizations and civil societies to come up with new, creative approaches to address large scale displacement in the 21st century.”

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