During this time of tremendous turmoil in the country of Afghanistan, local organizations are offering resources for individuals and families seeking refugee status and admission to the United States. Congressman Swalwell's office is ready to help those waiting for a Special Immigrant Visa. For people with family and friends with a pending visa application in Afghanistan, they should e-mail Mallory.Delauro@mail.house.gov with the person’s name; date of birth; case number; and your contact e-mail and phone number.
Other Refugee Resettlement Resources:
- The State Department works with several non-government organizations (NGOs) to provide services and relocate refugees and families here on a Special Immigrant Visa. Refugees selected for resettlement through the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program are eligible for Reception and Placement (R&P) assistance, unlike asylees, who arrive in the United States on their own. Each refugee approved for admission to the United States is sponsored by a non-profit resettlement agency participating in the R&P Program under a cooperative agreement with the Department of State. Additional information on that process is explained here.
- A list of the organizations that provide assistance for refugees can be found here. It is organized by state and includes website information for the organizations. Many of these organizations are currently looking for assistance, including these Northern California organizations:
- Jewish Family & Community Services in Concord: www.jfcs-eastbay.org.
- The organization said it will help resettle more than 60 refugees in the East Bay by the end of August. More information on this can be found here.
- To volunteer, fill out the Community Sponsorship Groups form.
- Financial Donations can be made here.
- International Rescue Committee (IRC) - Oakland: https://www.rescue.org/oakland
- The IRC is raising $150,000 for its Afghan Soft Landing Fund to provide refugees who have arrived in the last six months with housing assistance.
- Opening Doors, Inc. - Sacramento https://openingdoorsinc.org
- In addition to asking Congress to urge the Biden Administration to expand and expedite access to the U.S. Resettlement Program for Afghan Refugees, additional resources to support refugees can be found here.
Information for those with family/friends in Afghanistan who HAVE NOT SUBMITTED any kind of visa application to the U.S.:
- Instructions from the U.S. Embassy in Kabul to U.S. citizens seeking assistance advise those who have not already done so to complete the Repatriation Assistance Request, and shelter in place until they receive further instructions.
- For those who have served with United States forces, they may qualify for a Special Immigrant Visa. Information about that process can be found here.
- For those who have assisted the United States in other capacities but did not meet the stricter standards for the Special Immigrant Visa, more information about the Priority 2 designation visas can be found here.
- For those seeking to begin the routine family immigrant visa process for qualifying relatives, information can be found here.