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Refugee Resettlement


The U.S refugee resettlement program reflects the nation's highest values and aspirations of compassion, generosity and leadership. Since 1975, Americans have welcomed over 3 million refugees from all over the world. Refugees have built new lives, homes and communities in towns and cities in all 50 states.

A refugee is someone who has fled from his or her home country and cannot return because he or she has a well-founded fear of persecution based on religion, race, nationality, political opinion or membership in a particular social group. Refugees who come to the U.S. are invited by the State Department, and are legal residents on the ultimate pathway to citizenship. They must wait one year to obtain a green card, and five years to gain citizenship.


Refugees in Akron belong to two different resettlement groups. The first group is primary refugees, who are those that come from refugee camps or other temporary housing, and are resettled directly to their new residence in Akron. The second and predominant group is secondary refugees, who are those that are resettled in another city in the U.S., and eventually migrate to Akron.

Currently resettling in Akron are refugees from countries including Bhutan, Burma, Nepal, Myanmar, Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran, Pakistan, Vietnam, Syria, Uzbekistan, Ukraine, and Democratic Republic of Congo.