JCORE to join with HIAS, connecting two Jewish agencies with long histories of supporting refugees

Organisations to join forces amid the worst refugee crisis in Europe since World War II.

JCORE and HIAS today announced the joining of their two organisations in the UK, connecting

JCORE to HIAS’ international Jewish movement for refugees. While this decision was taken before

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine began, now, against the backdrop of the worst refugee crisis in Europe

since the Second World War, the partnering of these two Jewish organisations will enable both to

better respond to meet the needs of those affected.

Together, JCORE and HIAS – each with long histories of supporting refugees and asylum seekers –

will significantly enhance the UK Jewish response to issues of asylum, refugees and racial equality.

Some of this will take place within the Jewish community, through strengthening the education of

young Jews on racial equality, as well as introducing HIAS’ Welcome Campaign to UK synagogues,

expanding the network that has brought together congregations in the U.S. to take action on

refugee issues.

Beyond the Jewish community, the combined organisation will have greater capacity

to support programmes such as JCORE’s befriending project for unaccompanied asylum-seeking

young people (JUMP) and Refugee Doctors mentoring.

Dr Edie Friedman, Executive Director of JCORE, who founded the organisation more than 45 years

ago, will be taking up a new position of Honorary President. A search is already underway for a

Chief Executive who will lead the organisation and oversee its rebranding, including a new

name. There will be a major event in the autumn, at which the ambitions of this exciting

collaboration will be presented.

Edie, who is originally from the United States, said, “It has been a privilege to have developed

JCORE’s work in my adopted country. I am proud that, over the past 45 years, we have consistently

encouraged the Jewish community to take action on race and asylum in the UK. I am also proud

that we have helped to make the Jewish voice on these issues part of the national conversation,

respected by politicians, other communities, and refugee and anti-racism organisations. I look

forward to the next chapter in the JCORE story. I’m confident that the new relationship with HIAS

will ensure that social justice remains at the heart of Jewish values, thus also reinforcing a positive

Jewish identity, both for ourselves and for the wider society.”

Adam Rose, Chairperson, JCORE said, “JCORE has long been the UK's Jewish voice on issues of

race, asylum and refugee rights, and coming together with HIAS gives our community

access to a pool of knowledge and talent which will add huge support to the projects and

campaigns that JCORE runs. I also want to pay tribute to Edie Friedman, whose vision and drive to

rally the Jewish community to speak up for good race relations, against race discrimination, and in

support of refugees and asylum seekers in the UK has been truly remarkable and inspiring. I am

hugely excited for the future of our work in the UK, which, sadly, seems more needed than ever.”

Mark Hetfield, President and CEO, HIAS added “At HIAS, we used to help refugees because they

were Jewish, but today we help refugees in over 20 countries because we are Jewish. The Jewish

community of the UK knows the heart of the stranger, so we are very excited to build on JCORE’s

work for racial equality and for welcoming refugees by connecting them with HIAS’ work with

forcibly displaced persons around the world. The work of HIAS and JCORE in the UK will, consistent

with HIAS’ localised approach, be locally led. The global refugee crisis demands an international

response as no one community can do it alone.”