Our Mission is to Accompany, Serve and Advocate for the rights of refugees and forcibly displaced people

Jesuit Refugee Service/USA is an international Catholic non-governmental organization whose mission is to accompany, serve and advocate for the rights of refugees and other forcibly displaced persons. 


JRS/USA witnesses to God's presence in vulnerable and often forgotten people driven from their homes by conflict, natural disaster, economic injustice, or violation of their human rights.  


As one of the ten geographic regions of the Jesuit Refugee Service, JRS/USA serves as the major refugee outreach arm of U.S. Jesuits and their institutional ministries, mobilizing their response to refugee situations in the U.S. and abroad. Through our advocacy and fund raising efforts, JRS/USA also provides support for the work of JRS throughout the world.  


JRS/USA gives help, hope, ear and voice to vulnerable people on the move by being present to and bearing witness to their plight; by relieving their human suffering and restoring hope; by addressing the root causes of their displacement and improving international responses to refugee situations. 


In addition, JRS/USA inspires the Ignatian family and others to respond together to the needs of refugees and displaced persons worldwide and forges strong partnerships with like-minded institutions and agencies devoted to the cause of refugees and displaced persons.


JRS works in more than 57 countries worldwide to meet the educational, health, social and other needs of refugees and other forcibly displaced persons. JRS services are made available to refugees and displaced persons regardless of their race, ethnic origin, or religious beliefs.
JRS provides primary and secondary education to approximately 170,000 children, and undertakes advocacy to ensure that all displaced children are provided with a quality education.


Jesuit Refugee Service/USA is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Donations are tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.





JRS offers hope through special needs education
(Kakuma, Kenya) May 3, 2016 – "Even though I cannot see, I know more than many of you who can see, and that is what is important for me,” said Rhoda Atong Majok, a blind South Sudanese refugee who is among 37 children at Kenya’s Kakuma camp to attend primary school through the help of a JRS special needs scholarship.
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In Profile: Jesuit recalls early days of JRS in U.S.
(Washington, D.C.) May 1, 2016 – When Fr. Frank Moan S.J., got the green light to start a U.S. branch of Jesuit Refugee Service in 1982, he had few resources or support. But thanks to his initial vision and leadership, JRS/USA has blossomed into a thriving organization that today serves hundreds of thousands of people in more 45 countries.
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U.S. must provide legal representation to minors
(Washington, D.C.) April 29, 2016 — When young asylum seekers flee extreme violence to seek safety in the United States, they often find themselves in immigration court without a lawyer. Jesuit Refugee Service/USA and 176 other organizations today urged the United States Attorney General to halt the practice of pursing deportation hearings against minors who have no legal representation.
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Education for All Act provides security, instills self-reliance
(Washington, D.C.) April 26, 2016 — Jesuit Refugee Service and more than 45 other organizations sent a joint letter to Congress today urging the House to support the Education for All Act, a bipartisan bill seeking to ensure that children around the world have access to a quality basic education.
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Sri Lanka: online education helps youth overcome obstacles and focus on brighter futures
(Washington, D.C.) April 26, 2016 — While Sri Lanka’s decades-long civil war ended seven years ago, educational opportunities remain a lingering and devastating casualty. But, a Jesuit Refugee Service program in the island nation’s war-torn north provides youth in the region greater access to quality tertiary level education.
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Global: faith leaders urge Cameron and Obama to help Syrian refugees
(Rome) April 22, 2016 – President Obama is in London for talks with UK Prime Minister David Cameron regarding the upcoming referendum to decide Britain's membership in the EU. They will also discuss the fight to oust the Islamic State. In a letter, 28 faith-based leaders call the two leaders to consider Syria in these talks.
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Uganda: integration opportunities rebuild lives
(Kampala) April 18, 2016 — Meet two refugees who have launched their own businesses in Uganda with assistance from Jesuit Refugee Service. JRS helps refugees in Kampala become self-sufficient by offering English language courses and vocational training courses in business management, fashion and design, hairdressing, carpentry, arts and crafts, and catering. 
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Pope Francis to refugees: “You are not alone”
(Rome) April 17, 2016 — Pope Francis yesterday stood in solidarity with refugees and migrants on the Greek island of Lesbos, reminding them “you are not alone.” The Pope followed his words with action. On his return to the Vatican, he brought with him a dozen Syrian Muslim refugees — including six children, personally demonstrating the values of welcome and accompaniment.
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Take Action: Support the Fair Day in Court for Kids Act
(Washington, D.C.) April 14, 2016 — Today, more than 93,000 children seeking asylum in the United States are forced to represent themselves in court without a lawyer. These children have fled violence, persecution and extreme poverty in their home countries, and now must navigate the legal system on their own.
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Ambitious new resources needed for education in emergencies
(Washington, D.C.) April 13, 2016 — Jesuit Refugee Service/USA believes education is a life-saving intervention, and has joined more than 50 international humanitarian organizations to call for action so that all children are able to realize their right to education. In 2015 alone, more than 80 million children and young people had their education disrupted or destroyed by emergencies and prolonged crises.
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Recent stories
Greece: Pope to visit Lesbos, a symbol of hope for refugees
(Rome) April 12, 2016 – At a time when hundreds of thousands are risking their lives to reach safety in Europe, Jesuit Refugee Service is very pleased that Pope Francis will visit the Greek island of Lesbos, a major transit point, this Saturday, April 16, to confront the emergency situation of refugees and the need for international solidarity.
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Syria: Fr Frans lives on as a beacon of hope
(Beirut) April 6, 2016 — Jesuit Father Frans van der Lugt was killed in Homs, Syria, on April 7th 2014. Frans was a healer — he touched the broken spirits of a battered people; he did not care for himself, if someone was physically sick, he did all he could to make them well again. Fr Frans is revered as a Saint today by both Muslims and Christians. 
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Journeys of Hope: From life and death to asylum
(Brussels) April 3, 2016 — “There is no doubt we have to do this,” to welcome and to protect refugees, says the German parish priest. “You have to meet each other face to face, to hear the story. As we listened, the more we learned, as much as we could understand, the more our conviction grew.”
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Europe: EU-Turkey deal violates international law
(Rome) April 1, 2016 — Jesuit Refugee Service is deeply concerned by the deal between the EU and Turkey regarding refugee relocation and resettlement. The decision to push refugees and migrants back to Turkey is a violation of the international law to provide protection, and contrary to EU principles of guaranteeing the right to claim asylum and prohibiting collective expulsions.
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Detention center chaplain provides hope
(Miami) March 28, 2016 — Life can take many unconventional twists and turns. From bodyguard to air traffic controller to airline executive to Catholic lay minster, Carlos Bustamante has enjoyed an exceptionally full life. But it’s his latest role, as a detention facility chaplain for Jesuit Refugee Service/USA at the Krome Service Processing Center in Miami, that’s perhaps his greatest challenge.
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Journeys of Hope: The people here are kind
(Brussels) March 27, 2016 — “Don’t be afraid, you’re safe, you’re in Germany.” These were the first words Sara heard when she stumbled out of the truck that had just taken her from Hungary to the promised land. Police caught Sara, her husband Mustafa, and their five-year-old son, but were quick to offer reassurance.
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Displaced at Easter
(Washington, D.C.) March 24, 2016 — As we enter the three most holy days of the church’s liturgical year, we naturally think sequentially. On stark Good Friday we pray in sorrow. Holy Saturday is the time of emptiness. Easter is then the day of light, of song and risen hearts. He lives, who was our sacrifice.
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Journeys of Hope: If people are crying, no one hears
(Brussels) March 20, 2016 — Rose is in her mid-thirties and living as a refugee at a shelter run by JRS for women in Rome, a long way away from the soccer fields that were her life and passion back in Africa. She is grave, telling her story slowly and deliberately; careful not to omit any detail.
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U.S. must not dismantle Refugee Admissions Program
(Washington, D.C.) March 17, 2016 — Jesuit Refugee Service/USA joined the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, Church World Service, Oxfam America and more than 230 other organizations in writing a letter to ranking members of the House Judiciary Committee opposing the so-called “Refugee Program Integrity Restoration Act of 2016.”
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Take Action: Oppose efforts to restrict refugee resettlement
(Washington, D.C.) March 16, 2016 — This week marks the fifth anniversary of the start of the Syrian civil war, which has resulted in more than 250,000 casualties, some 4.6 million people displaced within Syria and an additional 4.8 million who have fled the country. Congress is today scheduled to debate a bill which would impose harmful restrictions on U.S. policy as it relates to refugees, including those from Syria.
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