Responding to the Mental Health Needs of Ukrainian New Yorkers and Refugees
Special Projects Fund
May 31, 2022
New York City is home to more than 150,000 Ukrainians, many of whom have watched in horror the mounting deaths and devastation resulting from the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
These Ukrainian New Yorkers are grappling with how to help their families in conflict zones and how to support family members who have managed to flee. As the U.S. government prepares to welcome Ukrainians through traditional resettlement systems, many Ukrainian families have already reunited with friends and families in New York City and are relying on them for aid, as they have not yet officially been offered a legal status. The Edith and Carl Marks Jewish Community House of Bensonhurst (JCH) serves the largest community of Russian and Ukrainian-speaking residents in the country, using trained social workers to lead its Crisis Response Center. In 2022, NYHealth awarded JCH a grant for the Crisis Response Center to support mental health and social services for Ukrainian New Yorkers and refugees.
Under this grant, JCH will provide comprehensive case management for clients, including trauma-informed screenings and assessments; applications for health benefits; and accompaniment to medical visits. It will also provide clients with mental health supports, counseling, and resources. In partnership with the New York Legal Assistance Group and the Urban Justice Center, JHC will screen clients for temporary protective status, reunification, and humanitarian parole status at on-site legal clinics. Finally, JCH will provide emergency assistance food cards and child-focused supports such as after-school programs and enrichment classes. JCH will coordinate its services with other available resources, including New York City’s immigration legal assistance and mental health crisis response services.