Liberal Judaism has said it wants to be part of a community plan to resettle 750 Syrian refugee families – one of the largest civilian resettlement programmes since the Kinderstransport.
The first families began arriving in March, as part of the Vulnerable Persons Relocation (VPR) scheme, and will continue to resettle over the next three years, as they flee fighting that has killed over 100,000 people.
Formal accommodation and social services will be provided by the state using EU funding, but groups allied to Citizens UK have pledged to offer “more human wraparound support”.
Liberal Judaism’s Rabbi Danny Rich told Syrians: “We will stand with you. We in the Jewish community know the perils and indifference that people face in trying to find sanctuary.”
He joined other community leaders in calling for the government to double the number of refugee families taken in under the programme, and committed Liberal Judaism to provide English lessons as well as welcome events.
Rich also revealed that Liberal Judaism members will use the festival of Succot in October, when Jews build temporary shelters, as a “hook” for the campaign, adding that Muslims could to do likewise during Eid and Christians at Christmas.
“Alone we are weak, but Christians, Muslims, Jews and people of no faith standing together would be unstoppable,” he said.