This project is a part of the Racine Immigrant Support Initiative which is a collaborative effort of the RIC’s Immigration Task Force, as well as RIC member churches, other local churches and organizations.
The United States is currently involved in a historic effort to resettle over 50,000 evacuees from Afghanistan. In the coming weeks and months, Racine and other cities in Wisconsin will welcome hundreds of Afghan refugees and evacuees currently being housed at Fort McCoy.
The US Department of State requires that refugees be resettled within 100 miles of an affiliate Refugee Resettlement program. There are currently six such affiliate programs in the State of Wisconsin. Refugees allocated to our area will be resettled within 100 miles of its Refugee Resettlement Program office in Milwaukee which is Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsin.
The effort is being led by our state's three refugee resettlement agencies, Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsin, Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Green Bay and Jewish Social Services. Congress has recently passed a bill that provides temporary assistance for Afghan evacuees. While this funding does help pay for some initial basic needs, our goal is to welcome our Afghan allies with all the tools and resources they need to prosper.
Your support today will allow Racine Interfaith Coalition to create belonging and empower independence for individuals and families who were forced to flee their homeland because of war and persecution. In fact, many Afghan evacuees who are now in the U.S. seeking resettlement include courageous people who have risked their lives to support U.S. interests for nearly 20 years.
Please join us in supporting our Beloved Community.
Please consider a donation to help our new neighbors. Because the funds are being collected and distributed by the Racine Interfaith Coalition, a 501(c) 3 tax-exempt organization, your donation will be eligible for a tax deduction to the extent allowable by law. Thank you!
Make a donation to our fund. With your support, we can assist evacuee families in acclimating to their new lives.
Donate to LSS. Donate items such as clothing, hygiene kits and more to LSS. Look on their website for updated lists of items needed. In the future, we will need items for families as well but not at the moment.
Attend a Strategy Planning Session with RIC. To be added to the meeting invitiation and email list, please contact Amanda Ali at email@example.com. In these meetings, we collaborate with many organizations to create a plan once the evacuees are resettled in our communities. We will also be looking for many volunteers in the future. Volunteers may serve as English Tutors, Transportation Assistants, and Housing set-ups (including moving furniture, shopping for small household items, washing dishes at apartment). These meetings are the second Tuesday of every month at 6 p.m. Please check out our Event Calendar for more information.
Attend a Housing Committee meeting. The RIC team is working to address their most urgent need of finding co-sponsorship groups that can help secure affordable housing options and provide other tangible support that is vital for refugees - recently thrust into their new lives in Wisconsin - as they pursue health, safety and self-sufficiency. Those meetings are scheduled every Monday at 10 a.m. Please check out our Event Calendar for more information.
Become a Co-Sponsor. Co-sponsor groups help raise funds through financial and in-kind resources to provide daily activity support and learning and to cover costs associated with rent and utilities, furnishings, home supplies and more until self-sufficiency is achieved. Co-sponsors also serve as cultural navigators to help create belonging, understanding, and confidence for first-time Wisconsin residents. Working closely with the LSS Refugee Resettlement team and RIC staff and volunteers, members of co-sponsor groups schedule check-ins with individuals and families to provide teaching, as-needed information, resources and services (e.g., transportation to appointments, etc.), and to ensure overall needs are met. Helping to identify sustainable employment options for refugees and Afghan evacuees is also an important part of resettlement and we are happy to say that we have had companies in Racine step up and offer employment opportunities. The RIC team works with co-sponsors and refugees/Afghans to find appropriate job placements.
In general, co-sponsorship is needed for six months to a year as self-sufficiency is achieved. The subsidy provided by co-sponsors will help bridge that gap to provide for shelter and basic needs. There is a financial component to co-sponsorship responsibilities which varies based on the number of people being served and their specific needs. All funds raised by such groups should be made payable to Racine Interfaith Coalition’s Refugee Fund for appropriate allocation to refugee and Afghan evacuee individuals and families.
Every member involved in a co-sponsoring group must attend one initial virtual information session. If the group determines that co-sponsorship is a good fit for them, then the next step is to attend a virtual orientation meeting. Meetings are led by the LSS Refugee Resettlement team. If a group is interested in attending an initial virtual information session, the group leader should contact Sarah Halstead at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Learn more about path to resettlement and refugees. Who is a refugee? How does a refugee come to the United States? What is the history behind Wisconsin's refugee population?
October 12, 2021 - CBS 58