We Are All America Invests in Refugee Leadership Across the Country

Latest news | Apr 12, 2022 07:04 pm

We Are All America Invests in Refugee Leadership Across the Country 

Package of support from national collaborative spotlights the organization’s local, national leadership in amplifying refugee voices

State-Specific Press Releases – Louisiana – New York – Iowa

CHICAGO, IL We Are All America is pleased to announce the finalists of the Ethnic-Community Based Grant: the Louisiana Organization for Refugees and Immigrants (LORI), Russian-speaking Community Council (RCC), and the African Community Institute. All three finalists were selected from a national, competitive process and will receive $3,000 worth of coaching and technical assistance support valued at an additional $20,000. This initiative is rooted in the increased need to center and uplift the work being led by refugees for their local communities. 

“When we invest in refugee and immigrant leadership, we are investing in building generations of community leaders who can help us build a better future where we all belong. For us, investing in refugee and immigrant leadership means directly funding the efforts & initiatives being led by refugees and immigrants, and uplifting the work that is being done locally that promotes inclusive and diverse communities across the country,” said Basma Alawee, We Are All America Campaign Manager. 

As part of their package of support, all three organizations will be provided with technical assistance and a platform for sharing their work nationally from a consortium of organizations that also includes Refugee Advocacy Lab, Refugee Congress, Refugees International, National Partnership for New Americans, International Refugee Assistance Project, Church World Service and International Rescue Committee.

They will also receive membership and coaching support from Welcoming America, a national nonprofit organization that works to support communities by building a welcoming society where every person, including immigrants, can fully contribute and shape our shared prosperity. 

“We are pleased to elevate and support the important work of these three organizations and help other organizations learn from their efforts to enable the voices of refugees and immigrants to shape community decisions. We hope others will join us by ensuring resources are invested in this next generation of community leaders, so that everyone can belong and thrive in the place we call home, no matter where we come from,” said Rachel Perić, Executive Director of Welcoming America.

The support is part of a broader focus on the vital role played by Ethnic Community-Based Organizations (ECBOs), a term used to refer to organizations with strong ties and leadership in refugee and immigrant communities. ECBOs play a vital role in strengthening trust, participation, and access for residents frequently excluded from community decision-making processes and service provision. As a result, ECBOs and their capacity are foundational to the infrastructure for communities to be welcoming places for all.