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Refugee Connection Spokane gears up to help new Afghan refugees

Preparations are being made to provide translators, access to services and familiarize them with the Spokane area.

SPOKANE, Wash. — Refugee Connection Spokane is making plans for Afghan Special Immigrant Visa applicants that will be coming to Washington.

The situation in Afghanistan has spurred Congress to allocate visas for people who helped the U.S. war effort  in the country, some of those people will be headed to Spokane. Afghan Special Immigrant Visa program is available for those fleeing from the Taliban.   

Refugee Connection is gearing up to incorporate the arrivals into their Elder Program and their Refugee Kids Connect program. These programs are aimed to help people adjust to life in Spokane as easily as possible. 

The refugees will have to deal with a variety of challenges having to completely restart their lives in a foreign country. Refugee Connection will offer help getting access to services and resources, interpreting
as needed, familiarizing them with different aspects of the Spokane
community, offering ESL and civics classes and doing regular check-ins
with them. 

Refugee Connection says it is especially important to form a sense of community among the children that will be arriving to keep them active,
help prevent the "summer slide," with their education and help them thrive and feel confident as Spokane community members.

Military officials are hurrying to orchestrate dramatic evacuations from Afghanistan, where the Taliban quickly regained control of the country following the exit of U.S. troops. 

Heartbreaking photos and videos from the ground show thousands of Afghans desperate to exit their country at all cost. Many expect the militant group will reinstate its former violent and severe religious rule of the late 90s and early 2000s. 

Thousands of U.S. troops are now guarding the airport in Kabul and will be overseeing the evacuation of potentially 22,000 at-risk Afghans over the coming weeks. Those Afghans have served as interpreters, drivers, or civilian advisers to the U.S. military.

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