The IRC in Sacramento, CA
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 Sacramento 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 Afghanistan, Ukraine, Honduras, and other countries in crisis. They are seeking safety and the chance to move their lives forward.
Why are refugees arriving in Sacramento?
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. Out of the nearly 20 million refugees in the world, fewer than 1 percent are considered for resettlement worldwide.
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.
How does the IRC help refugees in Sacramento?
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.
Our programs in Sacramento:
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
What services does the IRC provide to the wider community?
The IRC in Sacramento’s immigration department not only serves our refugee and asylee clients, but also any low-income immigrant population. In addition, the IRC in Sacramento partners with local service providers and community groups to conduct programming.
How can I help refugees in Sacramento?
There are many ways that you can get involved with the IRC’s work in Sacramento. You can:
Donate: Give a tax-deductible financial contribution either via the website or send it to our office.
Volunteer process and opportunities: Read the steps you need to go through to become an IRC volunteer and see our current list of volunteer opportunities here.
Internship opportunities: See our current list of internship opportunities here.
New or gently used items needed for refugees: We’re collecting bicycles, computers, child seats, and strollers for newly arrived refugees.
Spread the word: Consider hosting a fundraiser via Crowdrise. Stay connected by following us on Facebook and ask others to do the same!
What do refugees contribute to Sacramento?
Once they acclimate to their new environment, refugees often thrive and contribute to their communities, building careers, purchasing homes, gaining citizenship.
IRC Northern California's Emergency Response Fund for new Afghan arrivals
IRC Northern California is opening up the Soft Landing Fund to directly support refugee families who have fled Afghanistan, and are resettling in the Northern California region. Funds will be available for families and individuals who are rebuilding their lives in our community.
Support refugees in NorCal during World Refugee Awareness Month
As the IRC in Northern California observes World Refugee Day on June 20, we are inspired by the resilience and creativity of survivors of conflict and persecution who are making a new home in the U.S. It's a time to remember the 79.5 million people around the world who have been forced to flee their homes while also celebrating the accomplishments of those who are starting their lives anew.
Here are ways that you can get involved!
Fighting hunger among newcomers in the United States
High rates of unemployment and Covid-19 infection among New American community members has contributed heavily to lack of stable access to adequate amounts of nutritious food . Refugees and immigrants have been some of the hardest hit populations in the country, disproportionately experiencing food and nutritional insecurity due to their high rates of employment in “gig economy” and other job sectors like food, hotel, and health which have been heavily impacted by the pandemic. Help new American communities combat hunger with a gift to IRC's food security programs in the U.S.
The IRC in Sacramento recognizes the many hurdles that refugees and immigrants face while creating a new home in the U.S. Our multicultural staff collaborate to minimize those barriers through our services and programs, and create a welcoming environment for these new families. We would like to thank the Sacramento volunteers and donors who believe that a diverse community is a strong community and who have helped us make #RefugeesWelcome!Lisa WelzeLisa Welze is Resettlement Director of the IRC in Sacramento.
individuals from refugee and immigrant communities
We help people whose lives and livelihoods are shattered by conflict and disaster to survive, recover and regain control of their future.See our impact at a glance
refugees resettle across the country and rebuild their lives
The IRC helps refugees fleeing war and persecution to rebuild their lives in over 20 U.S. cities.Learn about refugees in America
people with training to help them build careers and income.
Our economic empowerment support includes financial coaching, vocational training and asset building.Learn more