We Love in Concrete Ways: A Webinar on Accompaniment & Expanded Sanctuary

Members of UUMAN gathered to protest immigration ban

It’s a hopeful sign to see so many people of faith offer their church buildings and other spaces to house people fighting deportation, and we also know that physical sanctuary is often a last resort. That’s why Love Resists is working with partners around the country to create a directory of accompaniment networks that support arriving asylum-seekers and community members facing deportation.
When we expand sanctuary into our communities by participating in accompaniment networks and sponsoring and hosting asylum-seeking families and individuals, we love in concrete ways. In an accompaniment model, there is much more that we can do to support people being criminalized for migrating and those seeking asylum.

We hosted a webinar on April 10th to help those interested in learning about accompaniment networks, grateful for all that is being done to open your hearts and homes even as hate tries to close our borders.

More than 575 people registered from over 40 states for the session. Below are some of the resources participants asked for during the call. Many shared that they are already engaged in accompaniment networks. As mentioned on the call, we are part of an effort to help create a secure directory and are inviting all to share info about their network in this short form here .*

Follow Up Resources

Here are links to forms to express interest in sponsoring asylum seekers:

If you have more specific questions and would like a follow-up consultation, you can write to:

  • For Sponsorship: Rev. Dottie Mathews at dmathews@uuma.org.
  • For Accompaniment: Susan Leslie at sleslie@uua.org.
  • For more info about First UU Congregation of Ann Arbor’s experience: Cheryl Valentine at cherylnatzmervalentine@gmail.com.
  • Katia Hansen at UURISE (UU Refugee & Immigrant Services & Education) is also available for consultation on sanctuary, expanded sanctuary and more at Katia@uurise.org

Here are some stories of inspiration on accompaniment:

Stories of inspiration on sponsorship:

Models of Accompaniment Networks:

Bond Fund

Other resources that folks asked for over the course of the webinar:

The values of the Boston Immigration Justice Accompaniment Network:

* We honor people's dignity and choices in a system that denies dignity and choice.

* We expect messiness, confusion, and discomfort, and we also choose courage and trust.

* We judge the system, not people.

* We fight for one another as family, because we are.

More resources we recommend: