Refugee Assistance Program

*PLEASE NOTE* We are currently receiving a large volume of applications and are not accepting new applications at this time. Please check back soon. 

The mission of the YPFP Refugee Assistance Program (RAP) is to create a social support network of volunteer mentors for recently resettled refugees, asylum seekers, and other immigrants in the greater Washington, D.C. area. These relationships are integral to providing survivors of oppression, war, and political violence with assistance to build new lives in the United States. YPFP RAP volunteers engage directly with refugees, asylum seekers and other immigrants, exerting a substantial impact on their lives and in the process gaining meaningful professional exposure and experience. In addition, RAP serves to educate the broader YPFP community about topics related to refugees, human rights, and immigration.

Since October 2007, RAP has welcomed hundreds of refugees from Afghanistan, Bhutan, Burma, Burundi, Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Cote d'Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea, Guinea, India, Iran, Iraq, Mexico, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Uganda, and more.

For more information about how to get involved, email refugees@ypfp.org.

Please also check us out on Facebook: YPFP Refugee Assistance Program

Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of time commitment does RAP involve?

To be a volunteer with RAP, we expect all volunteers to commit to working with a family for a minimum of six consecutive months. During those six months, we expect volunteers to see their family approximately 10 hours a month.

Will I be working by myself?

Volunteers are generally put on teams of 2-3 people, depending on the size of the family. Occasionally, we may have to assign a volunteer individually, but will always check with you before assigning you to gauge your comfort level.

What kind of assistance do volunteers provide?

Once families/clients arrive, they work with their caseworker to make a list of priorities they would like to work on, which is passed on to the team that works with the family.  This could include employment assistance, learning to use transportation, accessing local resources (library, grocery store, etc) or practicing English skills.  However, the first priority of all volunteers is to provide friendship and support.

Where are families located?

Families are generally placed in MD and northern Virginia.  If you have a car, this may take between 30-45 minutes.  If you are relying on the Metro, it will take an hour to an hour and a half, using a combination of the Metro and Metrobus.  Please mention in your application if you have a preference between MD and Northern Virginia.

What kind of volunteers are you looking for?

We are looking for volunteers that have experience with multi-cultural situations, and are flexible and open about going outside of their comfort zone.  Additionally, if you speak a language common among our refugee population (i.e. French, Arabic, etc.), please mention this in your application – as well as your level of proficiency.

Who staffs the Refugee Assistance Program?

Sara Krautbauer, Co-Director
Contact: sara.krautbauer@ypfp.org

Allena Martin, Co-Director
Contact: allena.martin@ypfp.org

Narintohn Laungrath, Volunteer Engagement Manager

Sarah Shuster, Volunteer Engagement Manager

Olivia Daniels, Program Coordinator