Giving First Recipient for April: Refugee Immigration Ministry

The Refugee Concerns Working Group, an effort sponsored by the First Parish Social Justice Committee, is part of the Arlington Cluster of the Refugee Immigration Ministry (RIM). Refugee Immigration Ministry was founded in 1986 as an Interfaith Ministry whose purpose was to offer Spiritual Care in detention facilities. RIM has expanded to other services bringing volunteers together from many cultures and faiths to provide community-based services to uprooted and often isolated persons.

The First Parish Refugee Concerns group is actively building a cluster in Arlington and is already housing and serving our first Asylum Seeker. Clusters provide resettlement services (food, housing, transportation) within their communities. Clusters are made up of volunteers from collaborating faith communities within a given geographical area. This collaboration allows several clients to be supported by Clusters and provides an enriching experience to volunteers. 

Your financial support through Giving First will go directly to assist the Arlington Cluster. Additionally, we are looking for volunteers for our many cluster activities such as providing one-time transportation to appointments, hosting our guest for a meal or coffee date, coordinating ESL study and practice sessions, fund raising, or hosting someone in your home.  Come to our table at coffee hour to learn more.

Refugee Immigration Ministry is a 501(c)3 Agency which serves immigrants who are seeking asylum. Each client must be legally and medically cleared prior to acceptance in RIM's programs. RIM does not allow clients to send money overseas nor does RIM support any other program. Ninety-three percent of funds raised are used directly for client care and program 

Learn more about RIM through their website:

You can also contact the working group for more information. E-mail: refugeeconcerns @


Refugee Concerns Working Group

There are currently more refugees around the world than at any time since World War II. The Refugee Concerns working group enables First Parish members to become active in a variety of efforts addressing the global refugee crisis.

Our current focus is working with Refugee Immigration Ministry to provide housing and support services for Asylum Seekers. The RIM program allows clusters of faith communities to work together. The First Parish Refugee Concerns group is working to build a cluster in Arlington, and is already housing and serving people in need.

How can you help? We are looking for volunteers for many activities such as providing one-time transportation to appointments, hosting our guest for a meal or coffee date, coordinating ESL study and practice sessions, fund raising or hosting someone in your home.

Contact the working group through email to express your interest, we can direct you based on your interest: refugeeconcerns @

As a volunteer, you are required to complete a RIM Covenant Agreement

For more information, email refugeeconcerns @

Eric Segal, Cluster Chair Coordinating Committee
Jennifer Bermant O’Brien,
Carolyn Hodges,
Lynne Jacoby,
Doris Orellana

"living our faith"

Living Our Faith: Organizations Supported by First Parish Members

In January 2013, the Social Justice Committee held a service entitled "Living Our Faith." A list of organizations that congregants meaningfully support was started that morning as people who attended the service were invited to fill out a form telling us about the organizations where they volunteer or work, or to which they donate money. We continue to collect names and contact information for social justice work important to members of our community. Please follow this link to see the list of organizations.

As we compiled the list, the amount and diversity of our collective involvement impressed us. The next step in this work, after we pause to recognize the deep social justice commitment displayed here, will be to foster connections within our community among those seeking to engage with organizations on this list.

If you see an organization or topic on this list that you would like to get more information about please contact the Social Justice Committee at

ryp afterschool students

UU Urban Ministry Volunteer Positions

The UU Urban Ministry is looking to fill a number of volunteer positions. Could one be a match for you?

Tutor English as a Learning Language (ELL)
When: Monday or Wednesday mornings (10:00 am - 12:00 pm) at the UU Urban Ministry.
What: Join our team of teachers who lead English and citizenship classes for Renewal House residents and others affected by domestic violence.

English as a Learning Language (ELL) Childcare Providers
When: Monday or Wednesday mornings (10:00 am - 12:00 pm) at the UU Urban Ministry.
What: Take care of a small group of children while their parents participate in English classes.

Tutor with the Roxbury Youth Program
When: One day a week (M, T, W, or TH from 4:00 pm -6:00 pm) at the UU Urban Ministry.
What: Help high school students with homework and MCAS or SAT prep.

Bethany House
When: Days and Times are flexible at Bethany House on Newbury Street.
What: Volunteers are needed to support the day-to-day operations of this affordable housing unit for young women (including gardening and office/door coverage).

Jericho Road Roxbury
When: As needed.
What: Provide professional consulting expertise to a Roxbury non-profit.

Cooks (Individuals or Groups)
When: Occasional Wednesday evenings (4:30 pm - 7:00 pm) at the UU Urban Ministry.
What: Cook a healthy meal for ~40 students, parents and volunteers. Stay for game night!

For more information on these or other volunteer opportunities, please visit or contact The Rev. Rebecca Hinds, Director of Congregational Outreach and Volunteers, at rhinds @ or 617-318-6010 x214.


Arlington Food Pantry

Collection baskets are located at the front and office doors.

Monetary donations can be sent to:

The Arlington Food Pantry
Health and Human Services
27 Maple Street
Arlington, MA 02476

The Food Pantry can always use juice, jelly, cereal, things from baked goods aisle like cake mixes, etc., and personal items.

To learn more and donate online please visit or Contact Jean Nagle for questions.


Copyright 2017 First Parish Unitarian Universalist of Arlington

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