Today is National Citizenship Day. The United States Customs and Immigration Services notes, “Each year, on September 17, Americans celebrate Constitution Day and Citizenship Day. We encourage Americans to reflect on the rights and responsibilities of citizenship and what it means to be a U.S. citizen. We also recognize people who are taking steps to become U.S. citizens” (USCIS).
As many of you are aware, JFS has been involved with refugee resettlement since its founding. JFS is currently the only Jewish agency in Greater Boston that is involved in this noble and sacred work along with other organizations such as Catholic Charities of Boston, The Refugee & Immigrant Assistance Center (RIAC), and The International Institute of New England, to name a few.
In 2016, when over 5 million refugees had already fled Syria, JFS responded to the crisis by leading the JFS Syrian Refugee Humanitarian Project, a coalition of 17+ partner organizations from area synagogues, Islamic centers, academia, and the medical community. With the support of hundreds of volunteers and donors, JFS case managers resettled families from Syria in the Metrowest area and continue to help them overcome the challenges New Americans face when building a life in the United States.
We’re thrilled to share an exciting update on one of the families. The Bayyads are the first family eligible for citizenship from the JFS Syrian Refugee Humanitarian Project. They have taken the Citizenship class offered via a partnership between JFS and FAESL. JFS will help them complete their forms and continue preparing for their citizenship exam as they await a date. Parents Hanan and Iyad have two kids. Mohamad, their son, will automatically become a U.S. citizen once they’re sworn in, and Mira, their daughter, has birthright citizenship. We are excited and honored to support the Bayyads as they reach this significant milestone in their immigration journey.
Click here to learn more about the JFS Syrian Refugee Humanitarian Project!