Three years after launching our Refugee Family and Holocaust Survivor sponsorship programs in the New York area, Family-to-Family has expanded both programs to California. Working with Seniors At Home (part of Jewish Family and Children’s Services) in San Francisco, and Human Rights First in Los Angeles, we’ve begun providing monthly grocery gift cards to impoverished refugees and Holocaust survivors in both cities. We’re in the initial stage of expanding our Sponsor A Family program to L.A. as well.
44,000 and counting…
Thanks to donations from Eileen Fisher Renew, to date we’ve found homes for more than 44,000 gently used Renew women’s clothing items (by designer Eileen Fisher) – passing them along to low income women struggling to rebuild their lives. The clothing, which includes both casual and professional items perfect for job interviews, has gone to women in need at 20 poverty outreach organizations, including Westhab, Inc. in Yonkers, N.Y., The Henry Street Settlement House in New York, N.Y., The Bronx VA Women Veterans Clinic in New York, N.Y., Vet2Vet in Buffalo, N.Y., Family Justice Center in New York, N.Y., People to People in Nanuet, N.Y. and Integrity House in Newark, N.J.
What started in 2017 as a small pilot sponsorship program to provide monthly groceries to a handful of elderly and impoverished U.S. Holocaust survivors has grown steadily. Today, over 100 survivors are sponsored, with the potential for many more. That’s because an estimated one-third of the approximately 67,000 Holocaust survivors living here in the U.S. live in profound poverty. F-to-F’s one on one sponsorship program links each participating donor with one senior in need, and for either a $55 or a $27.50 monthly donation (for a shared sponsorship), will provide that senior with a monthly gift card to a local grocery store of their choice. Learn more or sign up here.
In an expansion of our regular Sponsor A Family program, Family-to-Family has linked up 90 refugee families who are recent arrivals to the U.S. with monthly sponsors. The program, launched in 2017, is an effort to help refugee families that are already in the U.S. but can’t yet support themselves. Each sponsored family is provided with a monthly grocery gift card enabling them to purchase basic grocery staples at a grocery store in their neighborhood. Recommended to our program by several national refugee resettlement agencies located in the New York City and upstate New York area, these families – fleeing violence, war and persecution – have emigrated from more than 20 countries – including Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Chad, China, Cuba, El Salvador, Eritrea, Guatemala, Guinea, Honduras, Iraq, Ivory Coast, Libya, Mexico, Peru, Tajikistan, Togo, Turkmenistan, Somalia, and Ukraine. Sponsors provide a monthly donation to Family-to-Family which allow us to purchase the grocery gift cards, and can also send “their” family other basic essentials through the mail. Our goal is to help these individuals and families, who have already endured so much, feel welcome and secure in their new country. Learn more here.
Visa employees in San Francisco came together in late August and assembled an impressive 88 Family-to-Family Birthdays in a Box (in this case bags) for 88 children in need. The boxes, each filled with everything needed for one child to have a birthday party (cake, icing, decorations, a gift, etc.), were delivered to the poverty outreach organization Hamilton Families, also in San Francisco, where they’ll be given to low income children in their transitional housing and shelter programs.
Want to do something special for a child in need this holiday season? “Adopt” and shop for the kids in one Orlando, Florida family living in profound poverty. Email us for details on a family. Other ideas? Stuff a Holiday Stocking, or Make a Holiday Dinner Basket for a struggling family. We’ll link you with a local food pantry where you can drop it off. Or help your child “Give it up!” for a child with less by giving up one wanted toy this season.