Since February, we all have watched as more than 6.4 million Ukrainians fled for safety to neighboring countries. Many have started to make their own way to the United States, and Lutheran Social Services of the National Capital Area (LSSNCA) has already welcomed more than 50 Ukrainians arriving in the Greater Washington D.C., area. We want to continue serving all those who come to our doorstep seeking a community to welcome them.
The extension of humanitarian parole by the Biden Administration to evacuating Ukrainians currently leaves them ineligible for any government benefits, such as Refugee Medical Assistance (RMA), food assistance (SNAP), or emergency funding (TANF). This program also forfeits any federal funding and support to resettlement agencies, like LSSNCA, leaving us critically dependent on donations to serve Ukrainians arriving at our doors. What’s more, humanitarian parole only assures a two-year temporary stay in the U.S., and it may take several months for someone to receive employment authorization to work in the U.S.
LSSNCA is providing Ukrainians with emergency housing assistance funds, referrals for medical care, and several other essential – and time sensitive – basic needs and services.
Through the Biden Administration’s Uniting for Ukraine plan, Ukrainians only arrive to the United States if they are sponsored by a private citizen. Sponsors commit to covering their bills that will not be offset by government benefits or support. As most men are required to join the Ukrainian military, for women, children, and the elderly, estimated out-of-pocket costs for one year of sponsorship include (post-flights/arrival):
We're creating pathways to support Ukrainians - whether they are seeking asylum, reunifying through the Lautenberg program, or arriving with humanitarian parole and sponsored directly by neighbors like you. We’re here to provide our experience, network, and services as we all welcome our new neighbors fleeing for safety. However, our support requires private funds on an unprecedented scale as the U.S. government is not using the U.S. resettlement program for Uniting for Ukraine. Your donation will help us provide direct assistance to Ukrainians and support for their sponsors.
If you have questions about offering relief to Ukrainians, email us.