Help Refugees as a Volunteer: Part II

churchworldserviceIn this post, I’m continuing a list of places you can contact to find out about volunteer opportunities in your area. In Part I, locations are listed for World Relief and LIRS. Church World Service is featured in Part II.

Before moving on to a listing of cities, though, I’d like to discuss some ways you can help. The refugee agency where I worked for a year as a volunteer ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher wasn’t a Christian agency, but they were happy to work with churches to connect them with families who needed a sponsor. In one case, a church sponsored a single mother who had several disabled children. They helped her with transportation, food, furniture for her little apartment, etc., and made her a part of their church family. It was a beautiful thing.

As a single person or family, you may not be able to do as much, but you could work with after-school tutoring for refugee children, help with transportation to clinics (refugees often have multiple vaccinations they’re required to take during their first few months in the States) or doctor’s appointments, or even just find out who is in your area so you can invite your new neighbors to dinner at your house and help them feel welcome.

Church World Service (CWS)

CWS is another resettlement organization that works with both immigrants and refugees. Click HERE to be taken to the volunteer page at one of their main sites. Their partners include AmeriCorps and Habitat for Humanity. They are considered an outreach of a cooperative of 37 different church denominations. You can see that they work with some of the same local organizations that LIRS does. [An asterisk * indicates that the site offers legal help to immigrants.]


*Refugee Focus, Phoenix
Phone: 602-248-4400


*Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles
Interfaith Refugee & Immigration ServiceLos Angeles
Phone: 323-661-8588

*Opening Doors, Inc.
Center for New AmericansSacramento
Phone: 916-492-2591


*Integrated Refugee & Immigrant ServicesNew Haven
Phone: 203-562-2095


*Church World Service/IRPDoral
Phone: 305-774-6770

Church World Service/IRPDelray Beach
Phone: 561-266-0624


*New American Pathways, Atlanta
Phone: 404-622-2235 ext. 235


Phone: 773-989-5647


Exodus Refugee/Immigration, Inc.Indianapolis
Phone: 317-921-0836/0837


*Kentucky Refugee Ministries, Inc.Louisville & Lexington
Phone: 502-479-9180, ext. 26; 859-226-5661 (Lexington)


Bethany Refugee Services
Refugee Resettlement ProgramGrand Rapids
Phone: 616-284-3262


*Minnesota Council of Churches
Phone: 612-230-3216


*Lutheran Refugee ServicesOmaha & Lincoln
Phone: 402-441-7940, 402-435-2954 (Lincoln)

New Hampshire

Ascentria Care AllianceConcord
Phone: 603-410-3322

New Jersey

IRP Jersey City
Phone: 201-659-0467

New York

*Journey’s End Refugee Services, Inc.Buffalo
Phone: 716-882-4963

*Catholic Family Center, Refugee Resettlement Program, Rochester
Phone: 585-546-7220 ext 4624

InterFaith Works of Central New York, Inc.Syracuse
Phone: 315-474-1261

North Carolina

* Church World Service IRP, Durham
Phone: 919-680-4310

* Church World Service IRP, Greensboro
Phone: 336-617-0381


*Community Refugee and Immigration Services (CRIS), Columbus
Phone: 614-235-5747


*Sponsors Organized to Assist Refugees (SOAR), Portland
Phone: 503-284-3002


*Church World Service IRPLancaster
Phone: 717-381-2890


Bridge Refugee Services, Inc., Knoxville
Phone: 865-540-1311 ext. 3


Refugee Services of Texas, Inc., Dallas
Phone: 214-821-4883

*Refugee Services of TexasAustin
Phone: 512-472-9472

Refugee Services of Texas, Inc., Fort Worth & Amarillo
Phone: 817-413-3772, 806-381-0099 (Amarillo)

Interfaith Ministries for Greater HoustonHouston
Phone: 713-533-4940


CWS IRP Virginia – Harrisonburg Office, Harrisonburg
Phone: 540-433-7942

CWS IRP Virginia – Richmond 
Phone: 804-658-5279 or 5311



  1. […] World Service (CWS) (Part II listed CWS’s local sites and gave ideas for how to help […]


  2. […] check out Part III). For more tips on specific volunteer ideas, read the beginning of Part I and Part II of this […]


  3. […] reaching the right person in the agency (Part III), ideas for things you may do as a volunteer (Part II), and some brief encouragement (Part […]


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