Services To Older Refugees Social Services Set-Aside Fiscal Year 2017

Dear Colleague Letter 16-08

Publication Date: September 15, 2016

Date: September 15, 2016

Dear Colleague:

ORR will issue Services to Older Refugees (SOR) funding to states as a set-aside within the fiscal year (FY) 2017 social services formula allocation. States that served more than 25 arrivals aged 60 and older in FY 2014 and FY 2015 will qualify for floor funding. SOR allocations to states will be based on the number of newly arrived populations1 aged 60 and older for the previous two fiscal years. The table below provides the FY 2017 SOR set-aside by state.

SOR services to refugees and other populations served by ORR must be provided in accordance with 45 CFR 400.154 and 400.155. States may provide services to ORR-served populations who have been in the country up to 60 months (5 years), with the exception of referral services, interpreter services, and citizenship and naturalization preparation services, which do not have a time limit (45 CFR. 400.152(b)).

States receiving SOR funding should focus on the following areas:

  • Outreach - Establishing and/or expanding relationships with state or local agencies on aging to ensure older ORR-served populations are linked to community aging services;
  • Service Enhancement - Providing appropriate services not currently being provided in the community to older ORR-served populations;
  • Independent Living - Creating opportunities that enable older ORR-served populations to live independently as long as possible; and
  • Naturalization - Developing services that link older ORR-served populations to naturalization services, especially individuals who have lost or are at risk of losing Supplemental Security Income or other federal benefits.

Allowable activities within these areas may include:

  • Increasing  access to available aging services for older ORR-served populations;
  • Increasing access to senior community centers, supportive services, and intergenerational activities;
  • Communal nutrition services and meals delivered to homebound client;
  • Transportation;
  • Interpretation and translation;
  • Home care, adult day care and respite care;
  • Elder abuse prevention;
  • Nursing home ombudsman services; and
  • Citizenship and naturalization outreach, civics instruction, counseling, and application assistance. Application fees for citizenship examinations are not allowable using the set-aside funds.

States must report all SOR activities as part of their ORR-6 submission, including a summary in the narrative section of the report. The summary should include information related to the number of clients served as well as the type and frequency of services provided.

As part of the social services grant, ORR will enhance monitoring to ensure the SOR activities are targeted to best meet the needs of recently-arrived older ORR-served populations. ORR will assess the provision of these services and identify best practices as a basis for future formula funding determinations and set-aside activities.

Please direct any questions about this Dear Colleague Letter to Carl Rubenstein, Director of the Division of Refugee Assistance, at

Robert Carey, Director
Office of Refugee Resettlement

FY2017 Elderly Social Services Set - Aside Table

State Name  Total FY2014-FY2015 populations served Total FY2017 Funding*
Florida 4,596 $191,400
California 1,763 $121,500
Texas 831 $121,500
Michigan 456 $121,500
New York 381 $121,500
Pennsylvania 316 $97,200
Ohio 283 $97,200
Arizona 275 $97,200
Illinois 269 $97,200
Georgia 234 $97,200
Washington 216 $97,200
Virginia 184 $97,200
Kentucky 183 $97,200
Nevada 173 $97,200
Colorado 166 $97,200
North Carolina 155 $97,200
Massachusetts 154 $97,200
Minnesota 150 $97,200
Maryland 146 $97,200
Tennessee 123 $97,200
Nebraska 105 $97,200
Missouri 103 $97,200
Oregon 103 $97,200
Utah 80 $75,000
Wisconsin 64 $75,000
Indiana 63 $75,000
Idaho 62 $75,000
New Jersey 57 $75,000
North Dakota 51 $75,000
Vermont 48 $75,000
Iowa 39 $75,000
Connecticut 34 $75,000
Kansas 31 $75,000
Maine 30 $75,000
New Hampshire 27 $75,000
South Dakota 26 $75,000
Total 11,977 $3,402,000

*FY2017 funding actions are subject to availability of funding and Congressional action


1. The set-aside is based on newly arrived populations included in the social services formula allocation: refugees, asylees, Special Immigrant Visa holders, and Cuban/Haitian entrants.

Current as of: