RefugeeOne's New Home: Coming Fall 2020
After 35 years in our Uptown home, RefugeeOne will move this fall! When our office building sold last year, new owners announced plans to convert it into upscale rentals after our lease ends in September 2020.
Like always, we’re seizing this challenge as an opportunity. By buying a building, we can be much closer to those we serve, create space that's truly designed to welcome refugees, and strengthen our financial position.
Armenian Refugee's Life Work is to Help Others Just Like Her
RefugeeOne Executive Director Melineh Kano understands what life is like for refugees resettling here in the United States. She was one.
It was the early 1980s during the Iranian Revolution and the Iran-Iraq War. Melineh was studying interior design in Italy, but upheaval in the Middle East left her unable to return to her home in Iran.
In September 1984 , Kano and her mother arrived in the U.S., and were located to Hyde Park with a sponsor. She saod she spoke little English and had no concept of where she was. She didn't have any family photos, and her father had remained in Iran.
New Opportunity, One Stitch at a Time
Steve remembers his summers in Syria fondly, passing the days by his mother's side as he learned to sew. From the age of 8, she encouraged him to dedicate himself to learning a skill.
That was long before conflict broke out across the country, a conflict that would quickly turn into a civil war and eventually force Steve to flee everything he knew.
Upon arrival in Chicago, Steve was thrilled to learn the RefugeeOne Sewing Studio, a vocational sewing program for refugees. Within a week, Steve was enrolled in classes, determined to continue honing his skills so he could find work in his field.