Many of the refugees who have been resettled in Maine in recent years have fled from war or genocide in their home countries, including Somalia, Sudan, and Iraq. They sought safety in neighboring countries and refugee status through the United Nations before they were placed in refugee camps to await resettlement in another country. Many of them have been waiting years, and in some cases decades, to be resettled. (Learn more about refugees and asylees here.)
Throughout the state, although concentrated in Portland, RIS is contracted to provide primary refugees with initial resettlement (30-90 days post U.S. arrival) and limited ongoing case management and employment services (up to 60 months from U.S. arrival).
In Portland, RIS is contracted to provide limited case management (up to 60 months from U.S. arrival) services to secondary migrants and asylees who have been in the U.S. for less than 30 days. Those over 30 days are served by the City of Portland Refugee Services.
In Lewiston, RIS is contracted to provide limited case management (up to 60 months from U.S. arrival) services to secondary migrants which are the majority of the cases in that city.
In addition to our experienced and committed staff, we rely on the kindness and generosity of our neighbors and their gifts of money, goods, and volunteer time to ensure all refugees arriving in Maine are welcomed and supported. Click here to find out how you can support our efforts.