UMCOR Offers $1k Reimbursement Grant to Congregations for Afghan Resettlement Efforts

11/11/2021

Following the fall of Kabul, an estimated 75,000 Afghans are arriving in the United States to rebuild their lives. They are fleeing retribution or persecution from the Taliban and have one goal: to live in safety.

The United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) is supporting long-time partner Church World Service (CWS) in welcoming, resettling, and providing these families with housing, legal assistance, case management, mental health support, medical care, school enrollment, and community sponsorship. 

Community support is essential for successful resettlement. UMCOR and CWS are appealing to local United Methodist churches in the U.S. to engage in resettlement efforts and enter a sponsorship relationship with CWS. Congregations with prior experience resettling refugees and those without prior experience are welcome to participate.

CWS is affiliated with New American Pathways in our Conference.

UMCOR recognizes that providing resettlement support to refugees presents congregations with new responsibilities. Therefore, because the church is explicitly called to “welcome the stranger,” because John Wesley claimed for us a broad definition of pastoral care when he declared “I look upon all the world as my parish,” because “there is no holiness but social holiness” and because there is a long tradition of offering welcome to refugees, UMCOR will partner with local United Methodist churches to share some of the costs associated with Afghan refugee resettlement.

The Afghan Refugee Resettlement Reimbursement program will reimburse up to $1,000 per local United Methodist church in the United States that is in a sponsorship relationship with Church World Service. 

United Methodist churches in the United States in a sponsorship relationship with Church World Service are eligible to apply. Local UMCs who have not yet entered into sponsorship but are interested can visit CWS’ website here for more information.

Application materials include the Afghan Refugee Resettlement Reimbursement form and the Wire Transfer Request form. Applications must be signed by the senior pastor and by a Church World Service staff member (affiliate or national).

Complete applications will be received on a rolling basis beginning November 1, 2021 through April 30, 2022. (Note: This invitation to apply does not guarantee funding. UMCOR reserves the right to deny any request for funding at any time to any organization without providing cause.)

UMCOR must receive scanned receipts for expenses listed in the Afghan Refugee Resettlement Reimbursement form. Expenses eligible for reimbursement must fit the following criteria:  

  • Pre-arrival support, such as: setting up/furnishing an apartment; providing a culturally appropriate welcome meal; welcoming a family at the airport.
  • Post-arrival support: assisting in English Language Learners (ELL) tutoring; providing transportation to medical appointments; assisting with grocery shopping or community navigation; mentorship.
  • Providing other financial support to a newly arrived Afghan family to help them adjust to life in the U.S.

Questions about the application form or the process can be sent to migrationsp@umcor.org.

Click here to learn more and apply.


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