Every refugee faces countless challenges in being displaced, but women refugees face additional barriers in their resettlement process, as they often come to their new countries with fewer skills, less education and more limited economic opportunities. The contrast is perhaps the most stark for refugees arriving from war-torn countries where marginalization and discrimination of women is common.
Refugees arrive in the United States with hopes and dreams as diverse as their backgrounds but quickly find that their education and career goals don't align with the government's resettlement program.
The singular goal for refugee resettlement in the United States is self-sufficiency, defined by employment and transition off support services. This makes it extremely challenging for refugees to pursue higher education, forcing most to put aside their aspirations and take on low-skill jobs simply to survive.
Women refugees are particularly vulnerable as they are often head of households and possess few skills. Ensuring these women have access to education is crucial to their empowerment, financial independence, and social position.
Sundara is collaborating with The Arezoo Fund to support refugee women arriving in the US.
The Arezoo Fund, which means ‘desire’ in Farsi will:
Give scholarships to refugee women to up-level their skills in the following subjects: English, Business, Health, Science, Math, Computer Science and Technology.
Provide stipends for refugee women to start their own businesses
Provide financial support to refugee women who are in need of basic health necessities like medicine, diapers, baby formula, vitamins and menstrual hygiene products
Enabling refugee women’s access to education and entrepreneurship offers a new future for these women, and we are honored to be supporting this incredibly pertinent work.