Jewish Family Service (JFS)
Becoming a refugee is never a choice. Ask Rihab. Rihab was born in Baghad, Iraq in 1958. When the war started, it became increasingly dangerous for him to stay in his home country. His wife’s brother was killed. His wife’s family home was burned down. His brother was threatened and then killed. In August 2011, along with his wife and three children, he came as a refugee to the area.
“The first steps in my new life and new country were difficult. I remember how Jewish Family Service of Western Massachusetts sent two people, Abdul and Saad, to meet my family and I at the airport. Then I got assistance with applying for MassHealth, cash assistance and food stamps. JFS helped register my kids to school, helped my wife and I with our job searches and helped set up our first apartment with donated furniture and household goods.”
For over 40 years, JFS has been resettling refugees. Despite the recent political pressures, we are committed to supporting refugees, including the arrivals that have come since the recent travel ban was signed.
Our experience is that refugee families that come to the U.S. are truly thankful for the opportunity to start a new life and enrich our communities. “My family and I are deeply grateful to the U.S Gov’t for accepting us as refugees, as well as to JFS for their support and care. Today, I am proud to be a worker who serves the community and a taxpayer for three years now who is able to return a part of what I got from the United States.”
We need your help to continue to work with and for our New Americans to meet their needs and meet our responsibility. Support refugees with a gift to Jewish Family Service today. Together, we will speak up and act to be a welcoming place for all.
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