The IRC in Dallas, TX
The International Rescue Committee provides opportunities for refugees, asylees, victims of human trafficking, survivors of torture, and other immigrants to thrive in America. Each year, thousands of people, forced to flee violence and persecution, are welcomed by the people of the United States into the safety and freedom of America. These individuals have survived against incredible odds. The IRC works with government bodies, civil society actors, and local volunteers to help them translate their past experiences into assets that are valuable to their new communities. In Dallas and other offices across the country, the IRC helps them to rebuild their lives.
Who are refugees?
Refugees are people fleeing violence and persecution—in Syria, Afghanistan, Burma, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea, and other countries in crisis. They are seeking safety and the chance to move their lives forward.
Why are refugees arriving in Dallas?
The United States has a long tradition of sheltering those fleeing conflict and persecution. Once refugees have been identified by the United Nations refugee agency and cleared for resettlement, the U.S. government works with the IRC and eight other national resettlement agencies to help them restart their lives in America. Of the over 60 million humans displaced globally, fewer than one percent are considered for resettlement.
Refugees may be placed in a city where they have relatives or friends, or where there’s an established community that shares their language or culture. Other considerations include the cost of living and a community’s ability to provide medical services. However, as legal U.S. residents, refugees may live in any city and state they choose.
When refugees arrive in Dallas, their initial need is a sense of home. The IRC in Dallas focuses on providing a safe place to live, a furnished apartment, access to quality health care services, English and job skills classes, and employment services, all as a way to ensure refugees feel welcome and secure. The IRC in Dallas partners with community members who make these services available to the refugee community through financial donations, in-kind contributions, and volunteering.
How does the IRC help refugees in Dallas?
Our programs are designed to ensure refugees thrive in America--whether ensuring children are enrolled in school, adults become self-reliant through employment or starting businesses, or families receive acute medical care they need to recover from trauma or illness. The IRC helps those in need to rebuild their lives and regain control of their future in their new home community.
Refugees are greeted and welcomed at the airport by IRC case workers and volunteers to ensure their transition is as comfortable as possible. The IRC also makes sure newly arrived refugees receive:
- A furnished home
- Help with rent
- Health care
- Nutritious, affordable food
- English language classes
- Help building job, computer, and financial literacy skills
- Education for their children
- Social services and community support
- Legal services towards residency and citizenship
Our programs in Dallas include:
- Resettlement: Meeting the basic needs for food, shelter and legal rights in the early, critical stages of resettlement.
- Economic Empowerment: Protecting, supporting and improving household livelihoods and financial security.
- Community Integration and Development: Strengthening communities and preparing individuals to participate fully in American society.
- Extended Case Management: Promoting wellness and ensuring access to healthcare services up to five years after arrival..
- Mental Health: Connecting clients with social emotional support and other services with the IRC and throughout the community.
- Immigration: Providing assistance with adjusting immigration status, Civics/Citizenship, and family reunification.
What other services are offered by the IRC in Dallas?
The International Rescue Committee (IRC) in Dallas has been invested in the greater Dallas community since 1975. We provide the wider community with access to Board of Immigration (BIA) accredited representatives that assist in the completion of applications for naturalization, family reunification and other immigration benefits. We are also an accredited Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) site and provide free income tax preparation for anyone during tax season.
How can I help refugees in Dallas?
Thanks for you interest in the IRC in Dallas! There are many ways you can get involved with the IRC’s work locally. You can:
- Donate: Although we receive public funding for initial resettlement and employment services, the assistance and educational services we provide to refugee families beyond their first few months in the U.S. would not be possible without community support from individual donors such as you.
- Volunteer as an individual or group: Learn more about current volunteer opportunities and the application process.
- Become an intern: Each semester we recruit over 20 intern team-members to work in broad range of areas including development, education, employment, extended case management, immigration, and resettlement as well as other direct service programs and administrative support. The success of our programming relies on their assistance and support - interns are essential to achieving our humanitarian mission.
- Corporate Engagement Opportunities: We invite our partners to organize corporate volunteer opportunities.
- Donate new or gently-used items: Find out which items IRC collects for refugees in Dallas.
- Spread the word: Consider hosting your own Fundraising Campaign (on- or offline). Stay connected via our newsletter, follow us on Facebook, and ask others to do the same!
- Join GenR: Become a member of the Dallas GenR chapter! Generation Rescue (GenR) is a group of young and influential humanitarians who have joined forces with the IRC to help refugees survive and rebuild their lives.
- Explore additional opportunities: Employ refugees, become an advocate, buy produce from refugee gardeners, and more!
What do refugees contribute to Dallas?
Refugees’ contribution to the metro Dallas region is considerable. Not only do refugees bring with them the skills, talents and educational backgrounds that address the needs of Dallas’ booming economy, they also add enormous cultural capital that encourages entrepreneurship and small business development. As refugees integrate within their communities, they earn wages, pay taxes, start businesses, buy homes and support the local economy.
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