International Rescue Committee (IRC)

IRC in the News

IRC Press Coverage

October 29, 2015 - 

I volunteer for the International Rescue Committee as a family mentor. My “family” is actually two single moms from Somalia. F. is 21 years old and has a 19-month-old son. H. is 34 and has a 17-month-old son. My own daughter, Mia, is 15 months old. Although they can both read and write in their native Somali, they speak very little English. I should probably add that I do not speak Somali.

The first time we met, a volunteer coordinator, a case manager and a translator joined us in a small classroom. I expected to feel crowded, overwhelmed and awkward. I’m sure F. and H. felt the same. But none of my predicted feelings came true. Our children immediately bonded and followed each other around the room, banging on chairs, crawling under tables and playing with toys.


October 29, 2015 - 

The International Rescue Committee in Charlottesville is hosting a public talk about the Syrian refugee crisis at noon Friday at the Central Library downtown.

Leading the talk on the recent Syrian history that has led to the crisis is Hanadi Al-Samman, a native Syrian and professor at the University of Virginia. He will be followed by the Charlottesville IRC’s executive director, Harriet Kuhr, who will speak about the organization’s efforts in response to the conflict, their work with refugees in the area and how community members can get involved.

October 29, 2015 - 

Nearly 60% of refugees are living in cities today and there are currently more Syrian refugees in Istanbul than in all the rest of Europe, the head of the International Rescue Committee has said.

David Miliband told The Associated Press in an interview Monday that “the iconic image” of a refugee being someone in a camp has changed.

He said so many people are fleeing conflict and chaos that there’s no room for them in camps. Equally important, he said, is that most people don’t want to be in refugee camps and when they’re displaced for a long time, they want to earn a living — even if that means working in the black market.


October 28, 2015 - 

Waleed Al Shok, a 39-year-old Iraqi who came to New York City from Baghdad in 2013, is thankful for the mental dividends of New Roots. He’ll often bring his wife and young sons to the farm to relax amid his eggplant, beans, and garlic. None of it quite measures up to the taste of dates picked from his grandfather’s yard back home, Al Shok concedes, but there’s a sense of peace that comes simply from working the land. “Life in New York is not easy, especially if you have a family.

October 22, 2015 - 

The Charlottesville branch of the IRC has welcomed almost 2,000 refugees since it opened in 1998. Between Oct. 1, 2014 and Sept. 30, 2015, the IRC received and resettled 241 refugees from 12 different countries.

Harriet Kuhr, executive director of the International Rescue Committee in Charlottesville said this value is not determined at random, but rather through engaging in an in depth dialogue with the community.

“Every community that has a resettlement program has to determined what an appropriate capacity for that community is based on housing, jobs and the interest of the community,” Kuhr said.