Refugee Community Services

“Welcome” is something LSI has been expressing to refugees since World War II. LSI’s Refugee Community Services continue to welcome Iowa’s newest neighbors by providing education, family services, and economic development programs to help them get started on their path to citizenship and building a new life in Iowa.

Global Greens

Shop locally with Global Greens

Donate

Make a donation

Volunteer

Volunteer at LSI

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Why LSI

Bizimana spent years in a Tanzanian refugee camp after fleeing his home country of Burundi, and he dreamed of one day continuing his family’s legacy of farming. When his family was relocated to Iowa, he joined LSI’s Global Greens program. He now grows his favorite foods from Burundi while building his own business.

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Bhakti and Chhali felt overwhelmed when the time came to take their U.S. Citizenship Exam. They worked with volunteers in LSI’s English as a Second Language (ESL) classes, and they pushed each other to study hard for the writing and reading component of the exam. Their work paid off and the two recently received their citizenship.

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Born in Somalia, Shaacira’s life was marred by persecution and violence. When Shaacira came to the U.S., she was determined to create a better future. She enrolled in LSI’s English classes and Child Care program, which helps women become licensed child care providers. Today, she cares for three children in her home, allowing mothers to go to school or work.

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107893Dollars in income earned by Global Greens farmers in 2017
93shares sold in the Global Greens CSA this year
500Former refugees attended LSI's ESL, work readiness, and citizenship classes in 2017

Questions? To learn more about making a donation or in-kind gift, contact Nancy.Strutzenberg@LSIowa.org

For general inquiries, contact Refugee@LSIowa.org

Programs

The Global Greens program serves individuals who were farmers in their home country and want to return to agriculture and food production.

This LSI program empowers former refugee women as they open small businesses as child care providers.

This program provides connections to community resources, social, and educational activities to help former refugees age 60 and above as they transition to life in the U.S.

We provide classroom instruction and tutoring for former refugees as they prepare to take their U.S. Citizenship Exam.

Pick up a basket of our farmers’ freshest produce every week when you join the Global Greens Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program.

English as a Second Language (ESL) classes help individuals learn to speak, read, write, and listen in English, and hone in on American culture and life skills.

Our goal is to help individuals successfully enter the healthcare and hospitality industries. This program partners with local business and community leaders to provide contextualized training that builds refugees’ English communication skills and industry-specific workplace skills.

We work with area financial institutions to support former refugees through matched savings and financial education as they save for purchases — home, auto, business, or school — that will help build their new life in the U.S.