Refugee and Immigrant Self-Empowerment

Afghan Resettlement Program

As of November 2021, Refugee & Immigrant Self-Empowerment (RISE) has been approved to resettle Afghan refugees as a local community partner of the Ethiopian Community Development Council (ECDC), a national refugee resettlement agency. ECDC receives funding directly from the Department of State to implement the Afghan Placement and Assistance (APA) program, which provides initial resettlement services such as housing, employment assistance, school enrollment, legal services, and cultural adjustment to Afghans admitted into the United States on humanitarian parole.

“Even before the crisis in Afghanistan, ECDC had been preparing to expand its resettlement network. We had already built relationships with local organizations and communities that we believe have the potential to implement successful refugee resettlement programs,” said Dr. Tsehaye Teferra, ECDC’s President and CEO. “We appreciate the action the government is taking to innovate and quickly approve new sites and approaches for serving Afghans through the APA program and are pleased to officially begin working with RISE.”

“RISE is honored to have been chosen to support these New Americans. As a former refugee myself, arriving to a new country has many challenges and without support services, individuals and families struggle to navigate in a new land. Rise will provide the guidance and programs needed to integrate them into the Central New York Community.” Said Haji Adan, RISE Executive Director.

RISE has received 50 individuals thus far which ECDC has assigned for resettlement in Syracuse. RISE staff, with support from community stakeholders, has been ensuring that essential services are provided within 90 days of arriving in the local community.

How can you help?

The need is still great in resettling families. Please help us make sure that they have the resources they need to be self-sufficient and thriving community members. To make a financial donation or in-kind contribution to RISE please visit or contact RISE at 315-214-4480.

Afghan Resettlement Team

Leah Ifraimova

Director of Resettlement

Wali Azimi

Case Manager

Photos by Solon Quinn Studios