We have watched the fall of Afghanistan, wondering how it came to this. What have we been doing for 20 something years? Why have we not evacuated our friends and allies sooner? Why did we not act in 2009 when Congress approved the SIV program, enabling our allies in Afghanistan to emigrate to the United States before now? We can ponder all these realities, but the truth is, right now, all that wondering will not get us anywhere.
There are presently 200 refugees at Ft. Dix who are in the process of eventually being relocated to the Philadelphia region. There are several groups that are working to help this resettlement but one that we have worked with previously is HIAS PA. HIAS began as an effort to assist Jewish resettlement in the United States in the 19th Century, but is now the largest refugees settlement program in Pennsylvania.
We are exploring ways to support HIAS and their work. Part of this is turning to our interfaith partners to see how we can help meet the needs. I will keep you informed about these conversations.
In the meantime, there are ways that we can help support HIAS and its mission in the following ways:
- HIAS has been overwhelmed with household items. They are presently placing a hold on receiving such items until 2022.
- For a more detailed list of items needed, please visit HIAS’ in-kind donation page here.
- They have developed a Target shopping list for much needed items. That list can be found here.
- If you have furniture you would like to deliver, you can donate the furniture through the Philadelphia Furniture Bank.
- Of course you can also make monetary donations here.