Upcoming Events

September 14-18, 2020

Sept 14

Free Cultural Humility Virtual Training

Sept 15

Welcoming Communities Videos and Signs 

Vincent is a refugee youth who comes to our community from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) via Rwanda. In the video below he shares his experience being resettled into Washtenaw County.
Jeanine is also from the DRC, via Tanzania. She is a single mother of 5 and works with JFS to create instructional videos to teach her community members about America and what to expect. She sings a song for our Welcoming Community.

Chris Chancey is the CEO of Amplio, a multi-city staffing agency that connecting companies with the dependable refugee workforce. He has
partnered with JFS to welcome refugees and helps us find professional opportunities for our clients.

Sept 16

Free Mentorship and its Impact Information and Learning

Dear Welcomers,
Mentorship is a professional relationship where a more experienced person generously shares their own experience to support a new member of a community.

We have been fortunate to mentor and become friends with three young-adult siblings from Eritrea, who came to the United States after spending many years in an Ethiopian refugee camp.
Our primary goal was to help them find jobs – to work on their resumes, help with job searches, investigate college enrollment – but once we got to know them, we wanted to help in other ways as well. It has been a joy to work with the family for almost two years now.

Their resilience, drive, warmth, and friendship have been both inspiring and rewarding.
Before COVID-19, we enjoyed gathering as a group and going out for meals together, as you can see in the photos below. 

We volunteered to become part of the JFS mentoring program because we believe strongly in being active in a welcoming community and reaching out to those who need support.
Although our intention was to help others, we gained a lot in return. Refugees broaden our appreciation of cultures and humanity, and our country is enriched by their stories and their courage. 

Read more about successful mentorship in this article from World Education Service: 
Can you be a mentor?
You would be matched with a refugee or immigrant interested in a similar field. We ask that you commit at least 1 hour a week to establish a professional mentorship relationship which would involve career guidance and advice, networking, and social adjustment support.
We’ll invite you to join our Refugee & Immigrant Mentor Group on LinkedIn and reach out when we have an appropriate match.
Fill out the volunteer application here:
Margie Checkoway and Ruth Caston 
Hamila’s experience being a Mentee:
“The mentorship was very helpful to me. When I first met with Margie, I told her that I was a nurse back home. And then she explained to me what I need to do – all the steps I should go through – to be a nurse.
 She is the one who made me believe that one day I can be a nurse again.
 Margie gave me advice on a ranges of issues such Education and job. She advised me to improve my language skill and learn computer and helped me get registered at Washtenaw community college. She is the one who explained to me how it is important to speak English and have computer skill to work as a nurse. I was about to start to take English course few months ago and changed my mind due to COvid-19. I was prepared. She also advised me to take some courses at Washtenaw Community College and connected me to a student’s advisor who explained to me the process in detail.
She also helped me find a caregiver job, so that I can cover my education expenses. She is also the one who helped me know how to use the public libraries.
She is still helping and encouraging me. I really appreciate her. I am very happy with her support. I am grateful about everything she has done for me. I like her. I would like to say thank you to her. She deserves that.”

Sept 17

11:00 am -12:00 pm Dina Nayeri Author Event

From The New York Times Book Review :

“Nayeri, the author of two novels including “Refuge,” uses her first work of nonfiction to remind readers of the pain and horrors refugees face before and long after their settlement. Nayeri combines her own experience with those of refugees she meets as an adult, telling their stories with tenderness and reverence. The overarching thesis of the book is that for refugees, their past is part of their identity, and their effort to fit in is an act of love.