No one chooses to be a refugee. Refugees fled their home to escape persecution, war, genocide, extreme discrimination, and death. Catholic Charities San Antonio welcomes our refugee brothers and sisters to live a renewed life of dignity in safety and peace after years of suffering they may have endured.
The Reception and Placement Program and Refugee Support Services teams work together to provide a welcoming atmosphere for all newcomer and resettled refugees through the promotion of community integration, advocacy, education and the forging of new pathways that lead towards a life of self-sufficiency.
Eligibility for All Refugee Resettlement Programs:
• Must be legally admitted to the US as a refugee, asylee, Cuban entrant, victim of human trafficking, or other population deemed eligible by the US Health and Human Services Office of Refugee Resettlement.
• Must be within the Office of Refugee Resettlement five-year eligibility period (from the date of arrival in the US/date of asylum certification).
• Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) is available to persons who worked with the US Armed Forces as an interpreter or translator in Iraq or Afghanistan.
Services We Offer:
• Reception and Placement is the initial program that provides food, housing, basic needs, interpretation, transportation, school enrollment, acculturation, and follow-up services for newly arrived refugees for the first 90 days from arrival. Local parishes, churches, community groups and individuals work side by side with our agency to enrich the resettlement process through volunteering giving their time and talents for the benefit of those in need.
• Match Grant provides direct assistance, employment, medical and case management, interpreting and transportation for newly arrived refugees for the first 180 days from arrival. Our resettlement program has been successful with assisting refugees to achieve early self-sufficiency within six months after arriving to the U.S. Each federal dollar that is spent is matched by 50% of non-federal dollars in the form of cash and in-kind services, and gifts.
• Refugee School Impact provides after school tutoring to refugee children to support academic success and promotion to the next grade level.
• Refugee Support Services provides employment, education, social adjustment, and integration (adjustment of status and Citizenship) services for newly arrived refugees and up to five years from date of arrival to the US. Supportive services include referrals, interpretation and translation, childcare, and transportation services.
• Cash and Medical Assistance provides employment-based cash assistance program for newly arrived refugees for the first eight months of arrival.
• The Youth Mentoring Program serves youth from 15-24 years of age to make connections to peers, provide education-based case management services, and employment pathways.
• Preferred Communities Program supports the resettlement of especially vulnerable refugee populations for individuals who face particular barriers to integrating successfully and achieving self-sufficiency. Services provided include intensive case management, support services and the necessary resources to move from “at risk: basic needs unmet” to “thriving: basic needs exceeded.”
• Safe Passages Family Reunification provides home study and post release services for unaccompanied international children released from the Office of Refugee Resettlement DUCO custody to sponsors in the local community. Ensures the child’s safety, well-being, and permanency.
• Trafficking Victims Assistance Program provides services up to twelve months to potential victims of severe form of human trafficking (labor and/or sex trafficking), born outside of the U.S., and are not a U.S. citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident. Services include case management, emergency and basic needs assistance, housing, safety planning, life skills orientation, legal services, medical care, counseling, and family reunification.