Jewish Family Services of Greater Orlando leads collaborative community effort to house Ukrainian refugees in our Central Florida community.
Recently, St. Mary Protectress Ukrainian Catholic Church in Apopka became aware of a Ukrainian refugee family of four, with a toddler and newborn, few belongings, and no place to stay. Father Roman Kuzminskyi reached out to JFS Orlando to help the family in urgent need of assistance.
JFS sprang into action and mobilized the community. Through JFS Orlando’s relationship with Shalom Orlando, the newly merged Roth Family JCC and Jewish Federation of Greater Orlando, a generous donor provided a two-bedroom home to live in for as long as the family needs. JFS volunteer Eduard Kotlyar translated between JFS, the refugee family, and the donors. Then the Congregation of Reform Judaism Social Action team, along with the donors coordinated with JFS to fully furnish the new home and provide everything a young family could need, from clothing to car seats. JFS Orlando will provide the family with diapers and baby formula, and groceries through their Pearlman Food Pantry.
“This is just another example of the strength of community,” said JFS Orlando Director of Development Aaron Bernstein. “We’re grateful to our partners at Shalom Orlando and CRJ for their unwavering support.” Shalom Orlando CEO Keith Dvorchik stated, “We are excited to continue our partnership with JFS Orlando to provide for those in need. Together there is nothing we can’t accomplish as a community.”
CRJ Rabbi Steve Engel added that “We’re honored we are able to collaborate with our valued community partners to help our Ukrainian friends going through the unimaginable, across the world and in our own backyard.” JFS Orlando is proud to lead the community’s efforts to continue providing humanitarian assistance to our new neighbors and all those in need in our growing community. To learn more about JFS Orlando’s family of services, visit JFSorlando.org or follow them on social media @JFSorlando.