International Rescue Committee (IRC)

Cultural Orientation Facilitator

SCOPE OF VOLUNTEER WORK: Help newly-arrived refugees learn essential information about their new home in the U.S. as a Cultural Orientation Facilitator. Facilitators lead clients through activities and discussions around cultural adjustment, community resources and service, what to expect from their resettlement agency and more. Curriculum is created and refined under the supervision of the IRC staff, but Interns are encouraged to contribute to the development of new topics, activities and class materials. This internship may be of particular interest to someone studying social sciences, human services or education, and provides an opportunity to develop direct service experience in a multi-cultural setting. 


TIME COMMITMENT: Minimum one class per week (T/W/Th, 9am-1pm). Regular schedule required. Position begins June 2016. Minimum 2-3 month commitment.


  • Facilitate small-group classes aimed at different cultural and community orientation topics, such as health and safety, public transportation and finding a job in the U.S.
  • Assist caseworkers with outreach to clients
  • Communicate with fellow volunteers to ensure facilitator coverage for every class session
  • Track client participation in classes and conduct assessments at the end of each class series; input data into IRC’s client database
  • Provide feedback and collaborate with other volunteers/staff to make adjustments to curriculum as needed
  • Create activities and games to engage youth while parents attend CO classes
  • Help keep classroom space tidy and organized


  • Must be culturally sensitive, respectful of diverse backgrounds and willing to work with English language learners; previous cross-cultural communication experience a plus
  • Ability to handle sensitive client information confidentially
  • Comfortable working independently and with a team
  • Must be flexible, patient and willing to learn and perform reasonable duties as needed
  • Ability to communicate effectively in English; additional fluency in a refugee language (such as Arabic, Somali, Burmese, Swahili or Kinyarwanda) helpful, but not required
  • Teaching, tutoring, curriculum planning or group facilitation experience a plus
  • Willingness to adhere to IRC volunteer and workplace policies


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