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Resources for Inquiries

The Women’s Refugee Commission is dedicated to improving the lives and protecting hte rights of women, children and youth displaced by conflict and crisis. We are not a grant-making organization and we do not have field operations. 

We have compiled some information on organizations (from their websites) that may be able to better respond to your inquiry/request or guide you to an organization that can. All these organizations or institutions are based in the United States unless noted otherwise.

We hope you will find this resource helpful.


Read definitions that apply to the Women's Refugee Commission and refugee populations.


Read here for a comprehensive list of funding resources.

Relief Services

Caritas Internationalis Caritas Internationalis is a confederation of 162 Catholic relief, development and social service organizations. Caritas’ mandate includes integral development, emergency relief, advocacy, peace building, respect for human rights and support for proper stewardship of the planet’s environment and resources.

International Committee of the Red Cross The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is an impartial, neutral and independent organization whose exclusively humanitarian mission is to protect the lives and dignity of victims of armed conflict and other situations of violence and to provide them with assistance. Their activities include aid for civilians and prisoners, reuniting families, tracing missing persons, spreading knowledge of humanitarian law. Includes; relations with States, the international community and the private sector and cooperation with the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement.

International Rescue Committee
The IRC is a recognized leader in humanitarian emergencies. When thousands flee war or repression, the IRC is immediately on the ground to make sure life-saving help gets to those who need it. They provide shelter, clean water, healthcare, and education to displaced people. Most importantly, IRC works with them to make sure they survive their exile in dignity. Programs include emergency relief, fighting gender-based violence, health programs, post-conflict development, education for children and protection. The Women's Refugee Commission is an affiliate of the International Rescue Committee.

Jesuit Refugee Service
The Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) is an international Catholic organisation with a mission to accompany, serve and defend the rights of refugees and forcibly displaced people. JRS undertakes services at national and regional levels with the support of an international office in Rome. JRS programmes are found in over 50 countries, providing assistance to refugees in refugee camps, to people displaced within their own country, to asylum seekers in cities and those held in detention. The main areas of work are in the field of Education, Advocacy, Emergency Assistance, Health and Nutrition, Income Generating Activities and Social Services.

UN Refugee Agency - UNHCR Providing fleeing civilians with emergency help is often the first step towards their long term protection and rehabilitation. To meet these and other operational needs, UNHCR has developed a global network of suppliers, specialist agencies and partners. Projects can range from dispatching emergency teams to the scene of a crisis, providing emergency food, shelter, water and medical supplies, and arranging major airlifts for a large exodus of refugees or a flotilla of small boats for smaller numbers of fleeing civilians. Among a host of other programmes, there are projects to help protect the environment, build schools and raise awareness of such problems as HIV/AIDS.

Legal/Immigration/Asylum Advice

Asylum Access Asylum Access is a nonprofit organization dedicated to making refugee rights an on-the-ground reality in the global south, in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Asylum Access helps refugees get asylum – legal sanctuary – in the first countries to which they flee, in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Asylum Access also helps refugees to assert their other internationally-recognized human rights, such as the right to work, send children to school, and access local healthcare services. Our work protects refugees from unlawful or unjust detention, deportation, torture and death, and helps them to begin rebuilding their lives in a new home, free from fear.

Colombian American Service Association CASA provides access to proper legal counseling by professional and certified immigration and family law attorneys. The service is rendered by a group of dedicated volunteer attorneys. Legal counseling services are provided during evening hours, from 7-9PM by appointment only. Those interested in counseling should contact our main office and make an appointment with one of the volunteer attorneys.

Catholic Charities of Boston
Through immigration legal services, newcomers receive high-quality legal consultation, referral and representation for an array of immigration benefits, such as political asylum, naturalization and family reunification. Last year alone, more than 4,000 persons received immigration legal services from Catholic Charities. For more information about Immigration Legal Services, call 617-451-7979.

Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc.
CLINIC has led the start-up of detention-based legal immigration services under the auspices of its diocesan member agencies in Boston, Newark, Miami, El Paso, and San Francisco. In addition, CLINIC provides its network of member agencies technical assistance to start and expand its own detention-based program. As such, CLINIC has developed the largest legal representation program for asylum seekers in immigration detention.

HIAS HIAS not only includes a worldwide staff of more than 100 employees and the 57 people who sit on our board of directors but also a support base of over 14,000 generous individuals. We all work together towards a common goal: rescue those in peril, reunite families in freedom, and enable newcomers to build new lives with hope and prosperity.

Human Rights First Through its Legal Representation work, the Asylum Program serves as a more effective advocate for legal reform and policy change on issues affecting asylum seekers in the United States. The cases assigned to pro bono volunteers through the Representation Program inform Human Rights First’s advocacy goals by providing real-life evidence of the challenges asylum seekers face upon their arrival in the United States.

Immigrant Legal Resource Center The ILRC is a national resource center that provides trainings, materials and advocacy to advance immigrant rights. As a legal services organization, we train lawyers and paralegals on ever-changing and complex immigration law. We develop leadership by encouraging immigrants to play leading roles in confronting and reshaping the laws and policies that perpetuate racial, economic and social injustice. And we educate and empower those in the immigrant community so that they may organize and advocate for the rights and privileges that best define our democratic traditions.

International Rescue Committee In addition to integrating refugees into the U.S., IRC’s resettlement network provides high-quality, comprehensive immigration services to refugee and immigrant clients. Twelve regional offices have been accredited by the Board of Immigration Appeals to provide immigration legal services.

Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service View a list, alphabetized by state, of LIRS-affiliated agencies throughout the country that provide immigration legal services.

National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, Inc. The National Immigration Project is one of the few national-level, legal support groups that specializes in defending the rights of immigrants facing incarceration and deportation.

Tahirih Justice Center The Tahirih Justice Center was founded in 1997 to address the acute need for legal services of immigrant and refugee women who have fled to the U.S. to seek protection from human rights abuses. The Tahirih Justice Center is one of the nation's foremost pro bono legal advocacy organizations for women and girls fleeing human rights abuses and violence. Through direct litigation and public policy advocacy, Tahirih protects women and girls seeking escape from gender-based persecution and cruelty such as forced female genital mutilation, torture, rape, trafficking, honor crimes, gender apartheid, forced marriage, and domestic violence.

UNHCR Using the 1951 Geneva Refugee Convention as its major tool, UNHCR's core mandate is to ensure the international protection of 20.8 million uprooted people worldwide. It promotes the basic human rights of refugees and that they will not be returned involuntarily to a country where they face persecution. It helps them to repatriate to their homeland when conditions permit, integrate into states of asylum or resettle in third countries. UNHCR promotes international refugee agreements, helps states establish asylum structures and acts as an international watchdog over refugee issues.


Catholic Charities of Boston In 2005, the refugee resettlement staff welcomed 272 refugees from all corners of the globe, including Cuba, Ethiopia, Haiti, Liberia, Somalia, Sudan and Viet Nam. Newcomers are greeted by our staff at the airport; provided with a modest apartment furnished with basic necessities; and assisted with acculturation, job placement services and English language training. Along with this critical assistance, refugees receive compassion, understanding and positive reassurance from our staff to help in the attainment of independence and self-sufficiency. Catholic Charities is a resettlement agency of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. For more information about Refugee Resettlement, call +1.617-451-7979.

Church World Service/Immigration & Refugees Church World Service is one of 10 U.S. voluntary agencies upon which the U.S. Refugee Program depends to welcome refugees to America. For its part, CWS works with local resettlement affiliates in 23 states to help resettle some 5,000 new refugee arrivals in U.S. communities each year. CWS affiliate agencies work hand-in-hand with seven participating denominations, local congregational cosponsors, and volunteers to ensure that the newcomers have food, clothing, and other essentials as they help refugees learn English, find their way around town, enroll their children in school, look for work, and quickly become self-sufficient.

Episcopal Migration Ministries EMM is one of ten agencies that hold agreements with the U.S. Department of State to receive refugees from various parts of the world. Resettlement, while subsidized by federal funding, is made possible by generous financial support from the Episcopal Church, numerous parishes and countless volunteers in various parts of our network of 33 sites covering 27 diocesan programs. The EMM network is the vital component of our resettlement program which translates our goals and objectives into direct service to refugee clients.

International Organization for Migration IOM assists with the resettlement of persons accepted under regular immigration programmes through the processing of relevant documentation, performing medical screening and arranging safe, reliable and economical transportation. Language training and cultural orientation are also offered at the request of some receiving countries to facilitate the integration of migrants into their new host societies.

International Rescue Committee/Resettlement Dept.
The IRC supports newly arrived refugees by providing immediate aid, including food and shelter. Through a network of staff members and volunteers we provide access to the tools of self-reliance: housing, job placement and employment skills, clothing, medical attention, education, English-language classes and community orientation. Each resettlement office serves as a free, one-stop center for refugees’ needs during their pivotal first months in the U.S. In addition to integrating refugees into the U.S., the IRC’s resettlement network provides comprehensive immigration services to assist refugees and asylees on their path to becoming permanent residents or U.S. citizens. The IRC also provides specialized services to victims of human trafficking in the U.S. – men, women and children who have been forced or coerced into modern-day slavery.

UNHCR/Resettlement Dept. When it is sometimes impossible for civilians to go home, UNHCR helps them either to integrate in countries where they first sought asylum or to go to one of some 16 states which regularly accept refugees for permanent resettlement.