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Moving to new place can be difficult. There are so many transitions to make: new and different ways of doing things, cultural norms to understand, a new language to learn, a job to find…. If you are a refugee or immigrant, we hope the following information will be of help to you.
Local Refugee Resettlement Agencies / Advocacy Groups
- Jewish Vocational Services: JVS engages, encourages and empowers people to achieve social, cultural and economic integration. Refugee Services link here and events link here. 816-471-2808
- Della Lamb Community Services: Della Lamb offers hope and assistance to low-income Kansas City people of all ages. Main service areas include refugee resettlement, adult education & ESL, early education & childcare, youth services, and emergency social services. 816-842-8040
- Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas: assists individuals and families with immediate needs; provides support and education for families. 913-621-1504 Refugee & Migrant Services, Emergency assistance and Transitional housing, New Roots for Refugees at Juniper Gardens (with Cultivate KC).
- Missouri Immigrant and Refugee Advocates (MIRA): is a “coalition of organizations that recognizes the intrinsic value of all people, organizes and advocates for the basic rights of all immigrants on the local, state, and federal level. MIRA supports all measures in the state of Missouri that create a welcoming climate for immigrants and refugees, and that allow for immigrants and refugees to become fully productive members of our society.”
- KC Metro Immigration Alliance: this newly-formed alliance is kicking off a year-long campaign to promote citizenship and civic engagement. They will be offering Community Navigator Training focusing on Citizenship, DACA/DAPA, and more. Check out their Facebook page to learn more.
- Immigration Professionals (Jessica Piedra’s office) is a non-profit immigration law firm that assists clients throughout the immigration and naturalization process. Services are not free but the flat fees are low. Visit or call (816) 221-2277 to learn more.
- The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) Missouri-Kansas Chapter: contact your council ambassadors, find local immigration attorneys, and access policy and education resources.
- The Mexican Consulate can help with immigration issues, dual citizenship, and community education. (816) 556-0800
- Contact your local Congressional office: . Every Congressman’s office should be able to offer support with difficult immigration-related cases and can often help find information or expedite processes.
- KS/MO Dream Alliance: KSMODA exists to serve the Kansas City Metro communities by advocating higher education for immigrant and minority youth, regardless of citizenship status. They collaborate with local efforts and with the national United We DREAM Network. Visit http://ksmodreamalliance.
blogspot.com/ or https://www.facebook.com/ KSMODA/ to learn more. Myrna Orozco De La O is a Kansas City resident and United We Dream Associate Director.
- Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas: to learn more about free citizenship classes through CCNK contact Tracy Fuller, firstname.lastname@example.org, or call (913) 621-1504.
- Jewish Vocational Services: JVS offers citizenship services that provide assistance navigating the naturalization application process. JVS engages, encourages and empowers people to achieve social, cultural and economic integration. Refugee Services link here and events link here. 816-471-2808
- The Kansas City Public Library: take practice citizenship tests online via Learning Express. You can access this resource at the Library or at home, with your Library card or eCard (get one here). Email the Refugee & Immigrant Services & Empowerment team at: email@example.com. To learn more about the library’s citizenship programs: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- KC Metro Immigration Alliance: This alliance promotes citizenship and civic engagement. They also offer Community Navigator Training focusing on Citizenship, DACA/DAPA, and more. Check out their Facebook page to learn more.
- Legal Aid of Western Missouri is a non-profit organization committed to providing high-quality, free, civil legal assistance to low-income and elderly citizens. Immigration Law is one of their main practice areas.
- Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas
2220 Central Avenue
Kansas City, KS 66102
913.621.1504La Luz Immigration Clinic
We provide affordable and pro bono legal counseling and representation for a wide-range of immigration matters. We work with refugees and immigrants in need of representation for matters including:
- Family-Based petitions
- Adjustment of Status applications
- Consideration for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)
- Renewal/Replacement of Permanent Resident Card
- Self-petitions for battered spouses and children
- Applications for Temporary Protected Status (TPS)
- U Visas
- Fiancé Visa
- Travel Documents
- Remove Conditions on Residence
- Referrals as appropriate
We also assist undocumented immigrants who have no legal options by making them aware of their legal rights. This information empowers them to avoid fraudulent and predatory offers of work permits for large amounts of money.
- Law Office of Jessica Piedra handles family-based immigration cases. Her firm is committed to serving your family with a fully bilingual staff and accessible payment plans. Consultation appointments cost only $50.00 whether it is in their office or on the phone. (816) 895-6363
- The Law Office of Ronald Nguyen, LLC, provide smart, sensible, affordable legal solutions regarding immigration. They have services available in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese. (816) 237-0808
English-Language Learning and Other Education
- Kansas City Public Library: Apply online for a Library eCard or come to the Central Branch or Northeast Branch for ESL classes. Contact the Refugee & Immigrant Services & Empowerment team to learn more about he library’s English language learner programs: email@example.com. Call (816) 701-3400 with any questions.
- Don Bosco Community Center: Assists families in the Kansas City area. Free English classes at their ESL School. (816) 231-2700.
- Kansas Migrant Education Program: Since 1967 the Kansas Migrant Education Program (MEP) has been working to ensure that migrant children can fully benefit from the same free public education provided to other children. Información para las Familias:
- Donnelly College Community ESL Program: Classes at Donnelly are not free; however they are significantly less expensive than other classes. Any level welcome, but targeted at beginners.
- Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas
2220 Central Avenue
Kansas City, KS 66102913.621.1504New Roots for RefugeesCatholic Charities, in partnership with Cultivate KC, has created the New Roots for Refugees program. New Roots builds on the strengths and experience in agriculture that many refugees already possess, helping them start their own small farm businesses growing and selling vegetables. Farming is a familiar livelihood that offers them some measure of self-determination and self-sufficiency, healthy food for their families, extra income, and a way to contribute to their new communities.
Refugee Employment Services
Our Refugee & Immigration Services program is committed to helping resettled refugees rebuild their lives. Securing a job is an important piece of that. Refugees possess a wide variety of professional, technical and labor skills, as well as solid work experiences. Most of all, they are eager to work. They want to regain financial stability for their families.
Refugees are invited into the country by the U.S. government. They are issued a valid Social Security Number and are fully authorized to work upon arrival. They may apply for citizenship within five years.
During the resettlement process, our Employment team provides free services to help refugees with the skills and support they need to successfully obtain their first U.S. job
- Hatch Staffing Services offers first -time employment for refugees in Kansas City. If you are hard-working and willing to do your part, this company can help. Call to reserve an interview time: 913-515-1823 or 913-856-7995. Ask for Hatch Staffing. Must bring two forms of ID to fill out an application.
- Bishop Sullivan offers basic necessities and the opportunity to become financially self-sufficient by finding employment. Services include a food pantry, household assistance, an employment program, services to the indigent elderly, and hot meals at their Community Kitchen. There are three locations in Kansas City.
- Community Services League provides emergency assistance, housing counseling, career coaching and employment assistance. (816) 254-4100.
- Full Employment Council is a one-stop destination for job seekers and employers in the Greater Kansas City area, offering employment services, skill development, job trainings, financial assistance, and more. Overview of Adult Career Services.
- Missouri Small Business and Technology Development Center in partnership with the University of Missouri-Extension, offer individualized business counseling for those interested in entrepreneurship. The SBTDC at UMKC is located at 4747 Troost. You can call 816-235-6063 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Food, Health, and General Social Services
- Harvesters – The Community Food Network is a local food bank that offers educational programs related to nutrition, supplies local non-profits with food to feed the hungry, and can help you apply for supplemental nutrition assistance through SNAP. SNAP Hotline: 877.653.9522
- Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas2220 Central Avenue
Kansas City, KS 66102
913.621.3445Our Kansas City, Kansas Emergency Assistance Center (EAC) is available to low-income individuals and families who need food or assistance with basic utility payments, housing, clothing or medical prescriptions.
The help goes beyond meeting immediate needs. An on-site case manager works to identify solutions and resources that will lead to long-term change. Call for an appointment to learn what you will need to bring with you to receive services. All services are free and based on need – not religion, race or nationality.
- Connections to Success KC is a non-profit mentoring organization that inspires families to realize their dreams and achieve economic independence by providing hope, resources and a plan. KCK: (913) 948-5968 or KCMO: (816) 561-5115
- Samuel Rodgers Health Center is committed to providing high quality, compassionate and affordable healthcare for all. Samuel Rodgers offers a Sliding Scale Flat Fee for all medical and behavioral health services. Options available for individuals without documentation.
- Bishop Sullivan offers a food pantry, household assistance, and hot meals at their Community Kitchen. There are three locations in Kansas City.
- El Centro, Inc. is a non-profit strengthening communities and improving lives of Latinos and others through educational, social, and economic opportunities. Latino family services. Promotoras de Salud: promoting good health and linking community needs to local health services.
- Guadalupe Center: The Guadalupe Center is one of the nation’s first social service agencies for Latinos and has grown to be the heart of Kansas City’s Latino community. They provide early childhood, secondary, preparatory and adult educational programs; facilitating access to health and social services for all ages; promoting and providing Latino cultural enrichment events; sponsoring social activities that engage our diverse communities. (816) 421-1015.
Immigrant & Refugee National Resources
- United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
- National Immigration Law Center
- Internal Revenue Service (IRS): residency rules for tax purposes
- U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants
- Office of Refugee Resettlement
- National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights for information on advocacy and policy work. (510) 465-1984.
- The Sylvia Rivera Law Project “works to guarantee that all people are free to self-determine gender identity and expression, regardless of income or race, and without facing harassment, discrimination or violence.” SRLP offers help to transgendered and transsexual immigrants on issues such as changing name and gender on immigration documents, marriage recognition, and applying for asylum based on gender identity discrimination.
Testimonials & Multimedia
- Follow Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas on Facebook to see some Hope Stories and contact them to join a free English or Citizenship class. (Hope Story #24 here)
- Listen to the following stories from KCUR: Soccer unites immigrants in Northeast Kansas City
- Listen to stories from Kansas City refugees from Sudan and Burma
A wide range of support, including Immigrant Services, is also available available through United Way 2-1-1
Call: (816) 474-5112 or toll free at (866) 320-5764
Visit: United Way 2-1-1