our story

OUr story

In winter 2021-2022, Jewish Family Services of Washtenaw County issued an invitation to congregations of all faiths in the Ann Arbor area to participate in their new refugee settlement co-sponsorship program.  


When contacted by JFS, Beth Israel Congregation and Temple Beth Emeth met to explore the idea of a collaboration between the two congregations, and soon met with other Jewish congregations to ensure the venture’s success by broadening the coalition.  The idea of supporting JFS and the refugees they serve was greeted with enthusiasm across the board.


The resultant six-member collaboration came together as Jewish Congregations Organized for Resettlement or JCOR, which includes BIC, TBE, the Ann Arbor Orthodox Minyan, Ann Arbor Reconstructionist Congregation, Jewish Cultural Society, and Pardes Hannah.  The Jewish Federation of Ann Arbor serves as JCOR fiduciary.


JCOR recruits volunteers from throughout the Jewish community of greater Ann Arbor. All volunteers register with JFS and complete the State of Michigan background check process. New volunteers then complete an online training course followed by JFS training for each of the specialized teams: Housing/Welcome, Employment, Education, Finance, Transportation, Cultural Orientation, Healthcare, and Child Care.  JCOR also has an On-Call Team of drivers and interpreters.  All JCOR volunteers work under the supervision of a JFS caseworker with whom we meet weekly.


Most of our personal family histories include stories of caring people who stepped up to help our 

grandparents, great-grandparents, or parents resettle in this country. Today, we are 

challenged to step up and help another generation of refugees. 


In August 2022, JCOR accepted responsibility to co-sponsor its first family of four from Colombia.