From Stranger to Neighbor

Refugee Assistance Fund

Belonging Begins With Us

Support for Ukraine Evacuees & Emergency Humanitarian Parolees

As nearly 14 million Ukrainians have fled their war-ravaged country, Gulf Coast JFCS stands prepared to help!

Gulf Coast JFCS is a designated refugee resettlement agency partnering with HIAS and the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) to welcome refugees as they begin a new chapter of their lives in our community. Although the Biden Administration is committed to using existing methods including immigrant and refugee resettlement to assist evacuees, Ukrainians are not yet designated as Refugees nor eligible for resettlement program assistance. We await an update on this status.

The Biden Administration announced Uniting for Ukraine on April 24, 2022 as one mechanism to welcome displaced Ukrainian citizens. The program allows U.S.- based sponsors to file a Form I-134 on behalf of Ukrainian citizens which would allow them to remain in the U.S. for up to 2 years. Family members can contact Gulf Coast JFCS for assistance in completing the process.

Additionally, the current administration announced limited benefits for Ukrainian Humanitarian parolees under certain emergency criteria through the Office of Refugee Resettlement.  Beginning on May 21, 2022, or the date you received humanitarian parole, whichever is later, you can apply at the state government benefits office or closest resettlement agency in your state including Gulf Coast JFCS.  

Gulf Coast JFCS continues to assist resettlement of Ukrainians who are eligible for the Lautenberg Amendment that was first enacted to facilitate Jews from the former Soviet Union. Our Refugee Services staff also screen evacuees to determine if they are eligible for support through our services offered at the Florida Center for Survivors of Torture.

Please use the documents linked above to learn more about the currently available assistance options or email Refugee Services if you are in need of further assistance.  

Even before the most recent current events, the demand for our Refugee Services was increasing rapidly. In the weeks and months ahead, the Gulf Coast JFCS Refugee Services team will be assisting several hundred refugees to settle and integrate into their new country. 

Each refugee has unique needs.  Among many types of assistance, the most common include finding housing and employment, improving language and communication skills, and enrolling children in schools.


Gulf Coast JFCS is proud to partner with HIAS and ORR to welcome and assist refugees to successfully and safely resettle in our community.  Financial contributions directed toward the Refugee Assistance Fund will assist these individuals and hundreds of others from other countries with vital food, housing, employment, and child care or school-entry support.  Together, we “welcome the stranger as our neighbor.”

Help Welcome Refugees Today

Gulf Coast JFCS has launched a special Refugee Assistance Fund and an Amazon Wish List to direct philanthropic contributions to help refugees settle and find safety, comfort, and happiness in their new communities. Your contributions will help fill gaps in funding immediate and essential resettling needs for all refugee families as they build their life in the United States.

Make an Impact:

  • $1,818: Housing, utility, and food insecurity support for 1 month for one household of 4 recent asylum seekers.
  • $200: Keep the lights on for a family for 1 month.
  • $100: Supplement groceries for 1 month
  • $50: Provides school supplies for a child entering school for the very first time.
  • $18: Help pay for English classes for 1 semester.

These funds will be directed to the most urgent needs of our newcomers, prioritizing those most in need.

How To Make Your Contribution:

Donate directly online below OR

Direct your contribution by written correspondence, either email or letter, to GCJFCS Refugee Services, Refugee Assistance Fund.

Sue Farley, VP for Development
727-418-2787 |

Refugee Assistance Fund

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Donation Total: $18.00 One Time