Refugee Support Services

Refugee Support Services funding helps refugees and other ORR populations gain economic independence by helping them find and maintain employment, preferably within a year of being enrolled in the program.

The Support Services focus on:

  • Employability assessment
  • Training and job development
  • Vocational training and skills recertification
  • Job placement
  • Job maintenance

The Refugee Support Services Program also addresses barriers to employment such as:

  • Social adjustment
  • English language instruction
  • Interpretation and translation
  • Day care for children
  • Citizenship and naturalization

These core services also build community partnerships with organizations and businesses, helping refugees successfully integrate into local communities.

There is an order of priority for support services.

  • New arrivals in their first year in the U.S.
  • Refugees who are receiving cash assistance
  • Unemployed refugees who are not receiving cash assistance
  • Employed refugees in need of services to retain employment or to attain economic independence


Refugee Support Services funding awards states and state-alternative programs, in accordance with 45 CFR Part 400, Subpart I. ORR uses a formula to determine awards: Each is based on the number of refugees in that state during the past year.

States can provide services to refugees who have been in the country up to 60 months (5 years), with the exception of referral and interpreter services and citizenship and naturalization preparation services, for which there is no time limitation.

Administration of services varies from state to state.

Contact your State Refugee Coordinator  to learn more about the Refugee Support Services program.