International Rescue Committee (IRC)

IRC Programs in Baltimore


Meeting the basic needs for food, shelter and legal rights in the early, critical stages of resettlement.

Reception & Placement:  Since its opening in July 1999, the IRC in Baltimore has resettled nearly 10,000 refugees and asylees in central Maryland. IRC staff meet refugees at the airport and provide initial housing, furnishings, food, and clothing.  Additional services include employment assistance, health, social service, and English-leanguage class referrals, and orientation to their new community. The IRC helps refugees to move towards self-sufficiency and integration, and to channel the energies of these New Americans so they become engines for community and economic development in the Baltimore metropolitan area.


Economic Empowerment

Protecting, supporting and improving household livelihoods and financial security.

Early Employment Services: The IRC provides vocational counseling, resume preparation, job search and placement services, and financial assistance for basic needs with the goal of helping refugees find their first job in America and achieve early economic self-sufficiency. To connect with IRC's employment team, email


Individual Development Account (IDA) Program: The IDA Program teaches saving and financial literacy skills to participants. Enrollees save up to $500 over six months or more and will have that savings matched towards purchasing a home. The IRC in Baltimore partners with Southeast Community Development Corporation (SECDC), which provides home ownership workshops and counseling. For more information on the IDA Program, please contact Deepti Scharf at 410-558-3261.

Community Integration and Development

Strengthening communities and preparing individuals to participate fully in American society.

Volunteer Program:  The IRC in Baltimore could not do its works without the support of dozens of volunteers and interns. Volunteers and interns support IRC’s programs by setting up apartments for new arrivals, picking up refugees from the airport, helping refugees find employment, preparing them for interviews, and more.  Learn more >

Family Mentor Program:  Family Mentors are volunteers that meet with assigned refugee families to practice English, assist with unfamiliar tasks and activities, and provide a helping hand to welcome them into the community.

Immigration Services: The IRC offers high-quality, low-cost immigration legal services, assisting refugees and other vulnerable populations.  Services include representation in connection with filing of applications and petitions for adjustment of status, family reunification, naturalization and other immigration benefits. In many locations, the IRC also offers classes in English language and civics to prepare individuals for naturalization. In helping refugees to attain citizenship, the IRC strengthens communities and encourages civic integration and participation.

Health and Wellness

Promoting wellness and ensuring access to healthcare services that address physical and psychological needs.

Public Health Program: The IRC works to improve public health education and access to healthcare for refugees by offering health orientations and workshops in collaboration with partner agencies, coordinating health intakes and insurance consultations, and doing outreach to community health partners to build strong provider networks and develop culturally sensitive resources.


New Roots Program: New Roots is designed to help refugees reconnect with the healthiest aspects of their food culture during their transition to life in the U.S. and to promote a meaningful avenue for durable health in their new communities. The program’s activities are built around two primary areas: food secure resettlement and community gardening.



Promoting durable solutions and ensuring life-saving protection of vulnerable populations.

Asylee Program: Asylees share the same legal definition as refugees, however their status is granted in the U.S. instead of abroad. The IRC provides case management services to certified asylees and supports them in accessing medical assistance and other benefits. If eligible, aslyees are enrolled, in partnership with the state of Maryland, in an eight-month early employment program that provides them with temporary housing and living assistance.


Children, Youth and Education

Providing educational and developmental opportunities that build the essential academic, personal and social skills needed to succeed.

Youth Program: The IRC provides direct support in enrolling refugee youth in school, conducting school orientations, and coordinating trainings with the school district to enhance the capacity of teachers to support refugee students.  Further, IRC offers workshops and trainings for refugee parents to encourage meaningful involvement in their children’s education.