What's New

November 2015


  • Ask BRYCS! Now accepting technical assistance inquiries! Bridging Refugee Youth and Children's Services (BRYCS), is pleased to announce that we have been chosen by the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) to provide technical assistance to newcomer families and those that serve them. For more than a decade, BRYCS has served as an information hub aimed at empowering immigrant children and their families. BRYCS overall goal is to facilitate information sharing and collaboration to strengthen the capacity of refugee-serving and mainstream organizations across the U.S., ensuring the successful development and integration of refugee children, youth, and their families. We looking forward to providing you with the most useful technical assistance (TA) and resources throughout the year!


  • MRS' 50th Anniversary! This year marks the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Migration and Refugee Services (USCCB/MRS). Join us for a one-day symposium and evening celebration scheduled for November 19, 2015 in Washington, DC.
  • The 2015 National Immigration Integration Conference (NIIC) will take place December 12-15 in Brooklyn, New York. NIIC 2015 will build on 7 years of partnership and innovation in shaping immigrant inclusion and integration in America and serve as a collaborative table where policy, business, nonprofit, labor, academic, faith, community, and philanthropic sectors build solutions together.
  • The Chadwick's Center 30th Annual International Conference on Child and Family Maltreatment will take place January 25-28, 2016 in San Diego, California. The conference focuses on multi-disciplinary best-practice efforts to prevent, if possible, or otherwise to investigate, treat, and prosecute child and family maltreatment. Representatives from Migration and Refugee Services will be presenting on Strengthening Immigrant Families and Preventing Family Breakdown as well as Promoting Trauma-Informed and Culturally-Sensitive Care for Immigrant Children in the U.S. 
  • Call for proposals! The Foster Family-based Treatment Association's (FFTA) 30th Annual Conference will take place July 10-13, 2016 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Conference Committee is interested in receiving proposals for new advance-level workshops on topics that cover new strategies, interventions, models, and theories that can be used by experienced family-based treatment professionals who have clinical management, administrative, research, evaluation, training, or supervision responsibilities. The deadline to submit proposals is December 16, 2015. Save the date! The 2016
  • COA Conference will take place July 17-19 in New York, New York. The Council on Accreditation (COA) is an international, independent, nonprofit, accreditor of organizations that provide social and behavioral health services to at-risk populations. COA researches and publishes best practice standards and engages organizations in a comprehensive review with the goal of strengthening and improving their capacity, administration and management functions and service delivery.


  • Community Grant Program, from the Walmart Foundation, will award local nonprofits that help residents within the service area of individual Walmart stores. The deadline to apply is December 31, 2015.
  • Small Grant Program, from the Captain Planet Foundation, is designed to encourage innovative initiatives that inspire and empower children and youth around the world as they work individually and collectively creating environmental solutions in their homes, schools and communities. The deadline to apply is January 31, 2016.
  • Education, Community and Health Grants, from the RGK Foundation, support a broad range of human services, community improvement, abuse prevention, and youth development programs. The Foundation's current interests in the area of Health/Medicine include programs that promote the health and well-being of children, programs that promote access to health services. The deadline to apply is rolling.
  • Health Reform Grants, from Public Welfare Foundation supports efforts to advance justice and opportunity for people in need. The grants focus on three program areas: Criminal Justice, Juvenile Justice and Workers’ Rights. Letters of inquiries are accepted throughout the year. 
  • Program Grants, from the America Savings Foundation support programs that focus on education, human services, or arts & culture. Programs must primarily serve residents in one or more of the 64-towns served by American Savings Foundation. The deadline is rolling.


Migration & Resettlement Awareness

  • Central American Immigrants in the United States, from the Migration Policy Institute (MPI), examines this growing population, countries of origin, distribution by state and key cities, and additional demographics such as language and English proficiency, age, education, employment, and more.
  • The Deaths at the Borders Database, from VU University in Amsterdam, is the first collection of official, state-produced evidence on people who died while attempting to reach southern European Union (EU) countries from the Balkans, the Middle East, and North & West Africa, and whose bodies were found in or brought to Europe. One of its aims is to investigate the relationship between migrant mortality and European border policies.
  • Language Portal, from the Migration and Policy Institute's (MPI) National Center on Immigrant Integration Policy (NCIIP), offers one-stop access to thousands of state and local agency documents—including contracts, planning reports, and translated material—used to provide services to Limited English Proficiency (LEP) individuals.

For Refugee/Immigrant Children & Youth

Cultural Orientation/Integration

  • Welcome to the United States: A Guidebook for Refugees, from the Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL), is now available in Dari and Spanish. This book contains valuable information to help refugees prepare for their first few months in the United States. It discusses what to expect as refugees settle into their new homes, look for work, meet people in the U.S., and adjust to American culture and society.
  • The 'Integration Policies: Who Benefits?' project, led by the Barcelona Centre for International Affairs (CIDOB) and the Migration Policy Group (MPG), aims to show how countries are promoting integration. This is achieved through the Migrant Integration Policy Index, which gives you an overview of migrants' opportunities to participate in society.
  • The Refugee Center (RCO), helps refugees in the U.S. through education and community building. The website provides a basic overview and background of life in the U.S., and is available in refugee languages. The overview includes education, career, health, daily life, rights and laws, culture, and features an interactive, online Citizenship Preparation course to prepare refugees for the naturalization process. Coming soon is an online GED Preparation course.

Child Welfare/Families

  • Mayan language Central American Minor (CAM) Program videos, developed by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops/Migration and Refugee Services (USCCB/MRS) in partnership with the Maya Heritage Foundation, aim to help raise awareness of the CAM-AOR program among speakers of Mayan languages. The Central American Minor (CAM) Program was established by the U.S. State Department in December 2014 to allow qualifying parents residing in the United States to apply for refugee status for their minor children in Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras. The goal of the program is to establish a safe and legal alternative to an otherwise dangerous journey for children in these three countries in need of protection. In addition to an abbreviated version in Spanish, educational videos were created in Acateco, Chuj, Ixil, Mam, Quanjobal, and Kiche. Each video provides a general overview of the CAM program as well as information on locating the nearest R&P affiliate for additional information on eligibility and the application process.
  • Central American Minors Backgrounder, from the Cultural Orientation Resource Exchange (CORE), aims to support Resettlement Agency staff who receive and welcome these children, and to aid others in host communities—educators, health professionals, social workers, government officials, and members of the general public—who may be engaged to help Central American Minor refugees adjust to life in the United States.
  • At the Crossroads for Unaccompanied Migrant Children: Policy, Practice & Protection, a report from the Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS), examines the U.S. system of protecting and caring for unaccompanied children. Recommendations that include: 1) apprehensions, screening, and referrals to the office of refugee resettlement, 2) access to justice, 3) family reunification, 4) post release services, 5) improving coordination and 6) oversight and accountability.
  • Post-Release: Linking Unaccompanied Immigrant Children to Family and Community, from the University of South Carolina, describes the need for post-release services for certain unaccompanied alien children. Drawing on case studies of four post-release service programs run by Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS), this report documents the scope of services provided by these programs, the needs of UAC who the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) has classified as "at-risk," and the enormous challenges UAC face to finding the services and resources they need.
  • FAQ: Protecting Unaccompanied Children from Trafficking or Other Harm, from Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS), explains the family reunification process for unaccompanied children, the Office of Refugee Resettlement's protection mechanisms for them, and offers an analysis of ORR shifts in policy from 2014 to 2015.
  • Unaccompanied Child Migrants in U.S. Communities, Immigration Court, and Schools, from Migration Policy Institute (MPI), examines refugee resettlement data, immigration court data and policies adopted by individual school districts to offer a portrait of where unaccompanied minors are settling, how they are faring in immigration courts, what types of services are available to them and how schools are adapting to their arrival. A webinar, Unaccompanied Child Migrants in the United States: How Are They Faring?, discussing this topic, has also been archived. 

Early Childhood

  • Talking is Teaching Community Guide and Resources, from Too Small to Fail, are designed to help tackle the word gap and support early learning and brain development. Resources are available in both English and Spanish and include tips for families, the benefits of being bilingual, tips for using language at home and in the community, tips for infant and toddler teachers and caregivers, tips for preschool teachers and other early childhood education program providers, tips for health care professionals, and more!


  • Serving Newcomer Immigrant and Refugee Students in Secondary Schools: Comparing U.S. and European Practices, an archived webinar from Migration Policy Institute (MPI), explores some of the urgent challenges facing school system leaders and educators as they seek ways to support these students and improve graduation rates. (Description from source)
  • The Educational Experiences of Refugee Children in Countries of First Asylum, from Migration Policy Institute (MPI), draws upon field-based case studies involving refugee children in Bangladesh, Burundi, Egypt, Kenya, Malaysia, and Uganda to examine how pre-resettlement educational experiences can affect how children encounter school and the relationships they form with their teachers and peers. An archived webinar discussing this topic, will soon be available.
  • The Academic Engagement of Newly Arriving Somali Bantu Students in a U.S. Elementary School, from Migration Policy Institute (MPI), traces the significant academic and behavioral challenges experienced by a group of newly arrived Somali Bantu students in a Chicago elementary school. The researchers, who spent two years monitoring the progress of these refugee students, also tracked the pressures placed on teachers and other school staff in dealing with this unique population, as well as their attitudes towards the students and teaching strategies. (Description from source)
  • "A Well-Founded Fear: Children's Literature about Refugees and its Role in the Primary Classroom", a dissertation from Goldsmiths University of London, identifies a new genre in writing for young people which has developed rapidly since the millennium, namely that of children's literature about refugees. It questions whether these books have a role to play in understanding and validating the circumstances of refugees in the primary classroom. (Description from source)


Health/Mental Health

  • The Educational and Mental Health Needs of Syrian Refugee Children, from Migration Policy Institute (MPI), reviews intervention programs in the Middle East, Europe and the United States, finding that some community-based initiatives developed for refugee populations show promise for addressing the education and mental health needs of Syrian children. It provides recommendations for best practices to address the mental health of Syrian refugee children, including offering quality, tailored education and mental health services that are culturally appropriate and that help the children embrace their new home and learn the host-country language without losing their ties to Syrian culture. (Description from source)
  • Pathways to Wellness, a partnership between Lutheran Community Services NW, Asian Counseling and Referral Service, Public Health Seattle & King County, and Dr. Michael Hollifield of the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation, provides training for mental health providers to effectively deliver services to refugee populations, and partner with refugee communities to better understand and address mental health issues.
  • Reducing Refugee Mental Health Stigma by Leveraging Community Leaders, an archived webinar from the National Partnership of Community Training (NPCT), focuses on addressing ways to reduce stigma around mental health issues among providers and refugee communities by leveraging refugee community leaders to engage with providers and relevant agencies. (Description from source)


  • Bibliography of Research-based Literature on Human Trafficking, from the Institute for the Study of International Migration (ISIM), includes a list of research-based articles, reports, and books on various aspects of trafficking of persons—adults and children—across international borders. (Description from source)

Program Development

  • Across Ages: Program Development and Training Manual, provides step-by-step direction for developing each component of Across Ages: intergenerational mentoring; community service; a life skill program; and family activities. Although designed as a comprehensive multi-intervention project, each component can be implemented independently or in combination. Program forms, evaluation materials, and training designs are included.