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OC Collaborative HIAS Welcome Circle

The Jewish Collaborative of Orange County is delighted to sponsor the
OC Collaborative HIAS Welcome Circle. Circle members include: 
Sam Balchowsky, Marlene Burnett, Rudi Berkelhammer, Gail Dratch, Pamela Kauss, Barbara Rosen, and others. 

Each HIAS Welcome Circle is composed of between 6-9 community members joining together to sponsor an Afghan family that was evacuated during the airlift out of Kabul in August, 2021.

Welcome Circle volunteers accept responsibility to:

  • Raise $25,000-$30,000 to help cover 12 months of living expenses
  • Help families find housing and furnishings 
  • Secure social welfare benefits
  • Assist finding employment
  • Provide transportation
  • Connect them with the local Afghan community
  • And all the aspects of helping a newcomer to the U.S. adapt to a new country and culture

In August 2021, over 70,000 Afghans were evacuated and taken to U.S. military bases where they were housed, further vetted, and provided medical care and vaccinations.

The U.S. government set a deadline for all Afghan evacuees, to be resettled in communities throughout the United States by February 15th. Our Circle's family was among the last to leave the bases and arrived to Orange County on February 19th. 

Your donations will make a huge impact and fulfill the mitzvah of welcoming the stranger. Thank you in advance for your generosity.

Ways to donate are listed to the right on this page.

Fri, July 1 2022 2 Tammuz 5782