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Goals of the New Hampshire Refugee Office
The Governor's Office of Energy and Community Services Refugee Program
provides federally funded services to refugees resettled in the State of New Hampshire in
accordance with federal statutes and the New Hampshire State Plan. The major goal of
this program is to assist refugees in achieving economic self-sufficiency and social
adjustment upon arrival to the United States.
Who are Refugees?
Refugees are people who have been forced to flee their home
countries because of a well-founded fear of persecution for reasons of race,
religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social
group. Persecution could be physical violence, harassment and wrongful arrest, or
threats to their lives. They take with them only what they can carry, only what they
have time to pack. Sometimes all they have left are their dreams, their hopes and
the will to survive.
About 600 refugees a year are resettled in New Hampshire
through two agencies, Lutheran Community Services of New Hampshire and the International
Institute of New Hampshire.
These nonprofit agencies receive U.S. Office of Refugee
Resettlement funding through ECS and agree to resettle a number of refugees at the start
of the fiscal year based on their perceived capacity to provide services for new arrivals
and the number of refugees coming into the U.S. Refugee resettlement services
- Case Management. Resettlement agencies facilitate and coordinate
a variety of services including housing, healthcare, referrals and general support
services as refugees transition into their communities.
- Refugee Cash Assistance (RCA) and Refugee Medical Assistance (RMA)
funds are designed to assist refugees during their initial resettlement period. All
refugees are entitled to Refugee Medical Assistance for the first eight months. To be
eligible for RCA, however, a refugee must be ineligible for Temporary Assistance for Needy
- English as a Second Language. Voluntary agencies provide over 90
hours a week in English Language Training throughout New Hampshire. Classes are
designed to assist refugees in key linguistic areas, thus preparing them to meet their
everyday language needs quickly and lay the groundwork for further progress in their
acquisition of English as a second language.
- Employment Services include an assessment of vocational skills, job
development, job placement and follow up services with local employers. An excellent
job market and the hard work of our refugee employment counselors have made New Hampshire
a model state for refugee resettlement. Refugees often find good, well paid work
within the first two or three months after arrival.
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