July 3, 2022 /

Helping Afghan Refugees

Beth El Temple started a program to help Afghan refugees in central Pennsylvania in the fall of 2021.  We are partnering with other local organizations, including the International Service Center and Jewish Family Service of Greater Harrisburg, to help refugees from Afghanistan as they arrive in our community.

So far, we:

  • Held a donation drive to collect a truckload of food, clothing, and other needed items, which we delivered to the International Service Center to distribute to newly-arriving Afghan refugees
  • Ran a Sisterhood Thanksgiving bake sale to raise money to benefit refugee families
  • Partnered with Jewish Family Service to hold a community clothing drive to support Afghan refugees

Current Needs

  • Clothing, food and other items are still needed as Afghan refugees continue to arrive in central Pennsylvania.  If you’d like to donate these items, please bring them directly to the International Service Center (21 South River Street, Harrisburg, PA).  See below for the current list of items needed.
  • If you are available to give rides to Afghan refugees, contact Rabbi Capptauber (rabbiac@bethelhbg.org).
  • Jewish Family Service of Greater Harrisburg has recently been approved by the U.S. State Department as an official Afghan refugee resettlement site, working with HIAS and the State of Pennsylvania to resettle refugees from Afghanistan. They are looking for volunteers and monetary donations to directly help with this effort (see their website for more information). If you’re thinking about donating money, consider these amounts (although your donation will not necessarily be used for this exact purpose, it will be used to help and support Afghan refugees who need many of these things shortly after they arrive in Harrisburg):
    • $18 – 10 bus passes
    • $25 – Groceries for a day
    • $36 – One night of housing for a family
    • $100 – Heat and electricity for 2 weeks
    • $200 – Groceries for a week
    • $250 – One week of housing for a family

Non-Food Items Needed by the International Service Center:

(please bring these directly to the International Service Center at 21 South River Street, Harrisburg, PA — not to Beth El)

  • Beds and Mattresses
  • Linens, Blankets, and Pillows
  • Toiletries and Personal Hygiene
  • Baby Items such as Diapers
  • Table Lamps
  • Cutlery
  • Plates
  • Glasses
  • Food Preparation Utensils
  • Cooking Ware
  • Household Cleaning Supplies
  • Small Closets
  • Drawers or Shelves to accommodate clothing
  • Kitchen or Dining Tables
  • Chairs
  • Small Couches
  • Seasonal clothing for work, school
  • Footwear for all members of the family

Note: Clothing need not be new, but must be clean, in good condition, and functional

Food Items Needed by the International Service Center:

(please bring these directly to the International Service Center at 21 South River Street, Harrisburg, PA — not to Beth El)

  • Aahu Barah Rice or Basmati Rice
  • Split Moon Beans (Green Lentil)
  • Mansoor Dal (Orange Lentil)
  • Moon Dal (Yellow Lentil)
  • Kidney Beans (Dry or Canned)
  • Chickpeas (Dry or Canned)
  • Canned Pinto Beans
  • Canned Peas
  • Peanut Butter
  • Jelly or Jam
  • Sugar
  • Flour
  • Green Tea
  • Tomato Sauce
  • Tomato Paste
  • Pasta (all kinds)
  • Canned Potato
  • Oil
  • Salt (Corn, Vegetable, Soybean)
  • Black Pepper