Word spread quickly through the small Arabic-speaking community in Missoula this spring that after an almost two year wait, the IRC would be resettling a family from Iraq. IRC staff easily formed a Family Mentor group of longtime volunteers and everyone anxiously awaited their arrival.
A few weeks later the family arrived, tired but full of smiles. Speaking only a few words of English, Hussein (Dad) declared that everything he saw was “big” and “nice.” IRC staff and volunteers got the family settled in a house, parents enrolled in English classes, and kids enrolled in school. Employment was next on their agenda, so they enrolled in the IRC Matching Grant program, an employment-based program with a goal of achieving economic self-sufficiency within six months of arrival.
Fast forward to today and both parents are working and the whole family is enjoying exploring Missoula and the “big, nice” mountains with new friends. Thanks to the Missoula community for making refugees feel welcome!