How to help refugees in the United States: 12 ways to stand for welcome
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.
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: Sign the pledge.
Writing a letter is one of the best ways to let your representatives know where you stand. We've created a postcard you can print and fill out with your own personal reasons for supporting refugees.
If you aren't in the U.S., tweet your opposition to the ban to the White House:
@POTUS: I'm proud to join @theIRC in standing with refugees! #RefugeesWelcome
4. Spread the word
Tell the world you #StandWithRefugees and encourage your friends and family to do the same. Share this post on Facebook:
You can also share this post on Twittter.
Teach other people about refugees and the U.S. refugee resettlement program. These IRC resources may help:
- Myths and facts about refugee resettlement
- "Extreme vetting" for refugees is already here
- How refugee resettlement really works
- Famous refugees
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.
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.
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
With more than 65 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. Of every $1 the IRC spends, more than 90¢ goes to programs and services that directly benefit refugees and communities affected by war or disaster.