Dear Friends,

Earlier this year, JFS SV and our fellow JFS agencies began planning with HIAS to prepare to resettle thousands of Afghans who, because they worked with U.S. forces, were qualified to enter the U.S. on Special Immigrant Visas (SIVs). 

This month, with the development of the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, that work became much more urgent. The situation in Afghanistan continues to be dynamic and chaotic. We remain in daily – often hourly – contact with HIAS as to when the next group of refugees will arrive. We are now focused on helping a sudden influx of SIVs and countless others who have been evacuated as they flee from violence and persecution. We expect to resettle nearly 300 refugees.

While the news from Afghanistan has been devastating, the ways our community has stepped up with caring and generosity has been incredibly moving and inspiring. As we’ve watched the crisis unfold, so many of you have reached out wanting to be part of welcoming people to our community.

We are so grateful for your financial support of the Ruth Perkins Emergency Fund for Refugees.

We appreciate your offers to help with housing refugees as well as your response to how you can help local refugees in 2021.

Thank you for this heartfelt response to help our new arrivals feel welcomed to their new lives in America.

Media Attention for our Work

In addition to the generous outpouring from the community, our work has also received media attention. Here are some links to some of the interviews we’ve been doing:

The Jewish News of Northern California article:

JFS SV Page of Facebook for latest updates:

We expect to resettle at least 300 people in the next 12 months. 

This is 600% more than we resettled last year! In addition to resettling them, we also provide food, housing assistance, job training, counseling for those suffering from PTSD, and more. The need for these services will only grow as more people from Afghanistan and elsewhere arrive in the U.S.

We’ve created a $500,000 Wish List to meet the needs of our refugee families:
  • Housing subsidies: $2500 x 100 households = $250,000
  • Prepaid phones for newly arrived refugees: $500 x 50 households = $25,000
  • Expanded refugee resettlement service hours to meet the growing needs: $225,000

As an extra incentive, a very generous anonymous donor has given us a $50,000 challenge grant to support our work with refugees—if you donate to the Ruth Perkins Emergency Fund for Refugees, your impact will be doubled.

We rely on your support to carry out this life-changing work, so we are reaching out today. Your support – of any amount - ensures that we can be ready for everyone we resettle.  

Thank you again for being part of our welcoming community. Together we'll continue to live the Jewish values of social responsibility, compassion, and respect that inform our work. 
Please stay in touch; we’ll continue to update you through our website, Facebook and enewsletters.

May the New Year bring peace and calm to us all.
Mindy Berkowitz,                                             Zoya Lazer,
Executive Director                                           Director of Refugee and Career Services

Please contact Mindy Berkowitz at;
or call her at (408) 357-7455 for more information.

If you wish to donate directly online
you can go to our website at,
and click on the DONATE button in the upper right hand corner.