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Refugee resettlement agencies are thankful to volunteers working to help refugees in the United States

How to help refugees in the United States: 12 ways to stand for welcome

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Photo: Lily Solmssen/IRC

The United States has a long, proud tradition of giving families fleeing war and persecution a chance to rebuild their lives in safety. Now this tradition is threatened by President Donald Trump's unprecedented ban on refugees. 

You can help at this critical moment by urging your elected officials to support refugee resettlement and joining local resettlement agencies, such as the International Rescue Committee (IRC), in welcoming refugees as new and valuable members of American society. Here are some ways to help refugees in the U.S. right now:

1. Donate online

Make a donation today to support the IRC in our work helping refugee families in the United States and around the world to survive and rebuild their lives. 

Donate now

You can find many other ways to make a monetary gift here. And don't forget: You may be able to double—or even triple—the impact of your generous donation with a matching gift from your company.

2. Donate goods

Some IRC U.S. offices welcome in-kind donations such as household goods, furniture and school supplies to support arriving refugees, but may have limited storage space.

If you are interested in making an in-kind gift or organizing a donation drive, please contact your nearest office to find out about their current needs.

3. Speak out

Urge your elected officials to oppose President Trump's ban on refugees. We need your help to fight back and remind Congress that the Trump administration’s refugee policies DO NOT represent American values.

Stand with refugees:  Take action online or even print and send a postcard to your representatives with your own personal reasons for supporting refugees.

4. Spread the word

Tell the world you #StandWithRefugees and encourage your friends and family to do the same. Share this post on Facebook or on Twitter.

View this post on Instagram

#RefugeesWelcome: no matter what. JUST IN: The U.S. has just slashed the number of refugees they will be welcoming this coming year, as the Trump Administration is proposing an annual admissions ceiling for refugees at 18,000.⁣ ⁣ This is the lowest ever on record. It’s a sad day for America.⁣ ⁣ Since 1980, this program has received bipartisan support – until now.⁣ Truth is, refugee resettlement is an essential lifeline that the U.S. provides for the *most vulnerable* refugees during the worst refugee crisis on record.⁣ ⁣ You can help. Join us in calling Congress to demand we admit at least 95,000 refugees per year, the historic average. Visit our link in bio for more. ⁣ #StandWithRefugees

A post shared by International Rescue Committee (@rescueorg) on

Teach other people about refugees and the U.S. refugee resettlement program. These IRC resources may help:

Show your support for refugees by printing and displaying this poster:

Posted reads: "No hate. No fear. Refugees are welcome here! #StandWithRefugees"



5. Volunteer

Look for an IRC refugee resettlement office near you and learn more about IRC volunteer opportunities and other ways to help locally. These might include mentoring a refugee family, becoming an English tutor, or coaching a refugee through writing a resume for a first job in America.

Please note that due to overwhelming interest not all offices are currently able to accept new volunteers.

6. Fundraise

You or your group can use your time, talent and social networks to start an online fundraising campaign or host your own fundraising event to support refugees and the IRC.

You can even choose an IRC office in the U.S. to support.

7. Join us at an event

Each year the IRC hosts a wide range of events in our offices across the U.S., where you can learn more about the cause of refugees and get involved.

Join us for art shows, film screenings, galas, lectures, international potluck dinners and much more. 

8. Welcome a refugee

Open your home to refugees in the U.S. in temporary need of shelter through IRC partner AirBnB.

9. Invest in a refugee's future

Patronize local businesses run by refugees. 

Employ a refugee in your company and encourage other businesses to do the same.

Learn about supporting refugees as an IRC corporate partner.

10. Thank others who support refugees

Say "thank you" to lawmakers, companies, celebrities and others who are standing up for refugees.

Meet 10 "Champions for Refugees" 

11. Learn about solutions

More people are displaced by war and persecution today than ever before. Learn more about how refugees build new lives in the U.S. with help from the IRC and supporters like you. And watch IRC president David Miliband's 2017 TED Talk in which he shares four solutions to ending the global refugee crisis.

12. Stay informed

Sign up for updates from the IRC or follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.


Thank you!

With 70 million people displaced by violence in the world today, the need to provide refuge is more urgent than ever. All of us at the IRC thank you for your compassion and your commitment to the cause of refugees.

The IRC is consistently awarded high marks by charity watchdog groups for our efficient use of financial support and the effectiveness of our work.