Our Grantees

Around the globe, more than 68 million people — nearly one out of every 100 people — have been forced from their homes as a result of war, persecution, extreme violence, or terror. A crisis of this magnitude requires a sophisticated set of solutions — including emergency relief, legal aid and advocacy. That’s why Refugee Action Fund’s grantees are transforming the lives of refugees and asylum seekers in myriad ways.

2019 Grantees

American Bar Association Immigration Justice Project, to provide access to justice and pro-bono legal support to indigent immigrants and asylum seekers in detention.

HIAS, to protect refugees and asylum seekers through legal services, humanitarian assistance, resettlement support and global advocacy.

International Refugee Assistance Project, to provide legal advocacy for refugees and displaced people in need of a safe place to call home through free direct legal representation, systemic advocacy and impact litigation.

San Diego Rapid Response Network, to support a migrant shelter that provides shelter, meals, medical care, legal services and bond fees, and travel aid to over 200 individuals, nearly 50-60 families a day.

Safe Passage Project, to provide free lawyers to refugee and immigrant children in the NYC-area who face deportation back to life-threatening situations, despite their strong legal claim to stay in the US.

Young Women Empowered, to help young refugee and asylum-seeker girls thrive through mentorship, leadership development and transformative programming.

Learn more about the types of work we support:

Emergency Response

Families are arriving at the U.S-Mexico border in desperate need of our help. Many have traveled hundreds, if not thousands of miles to flee violence, suffering, and persecution in their homelands in search of a safer, better life. While these families await the outcome of their applications for asylum, Immigration authorities are allowing families to live in the U.S. in extremely vulnerable circumstances. 

Your donation will help ensure that asylum seekers—many of whom arrive in the U.S. with only the clothes on their backs—can access safe shelter, meals, medical treatment, legal services and travel aid. 

Legal Aid

Many refugee and immigrant children embark on dangerous journeys to the United States seeking safety from gang violence, parental abuse and neglect, sexual assault, poverty and trauma. Immigrants are not entitled to court-appointed legal counsel. As a result, more than half of these children must go through immigration proceedings without the aid of a lawyer. Unable to effectively argue their claim to legal protections for which they may qualify, more than 80% of these children are issued deportation orders. These orders may require children to return to dangerous conditions in their countries of origin. 

Your donation will help provide free lawyers to refugee and immigrant children who may be unjustly deported to life-threatening situations, despite their strong legal claim to stay in the U.S.


In conflict zones, girls are especially vulnerable to violence and isolation, and are often kept out of school. Girls who resettle in the United States face enormous challenges; including poverty, language barriers, limited or disrupted education and trauma. 

Your donation will help young refugee and asylum-seeker girls access transformational mentorship and leadership programming so that they can heal, find their voices, explore college and career interests, and emerge as vibrant advocates in their communities. 

Legal Protection

The number of displaced survivors of persecution, war and conflict rises each year, and many governments have redoubled their efforts to keep refugees out. Those nations who welcome refugees often have limited capacity to provide protection. Most refugees live for years – even decades – on the margins of foreign cities or in refugee camps where they remain in legal limbo. Living without legal status makes refugees vulnerable to abuse, exploitation and deportation. 

Your donation will help ensure that refugees around the world secure legal representation to help them find pathways to safety, security and permanent legal residence. 

Advocacy and Impact Litigation

From separating families at the U.S.-Mexico border to drastically curtailing the refugee resettlement program, the U.S. government has severely undermined the safety and protection of refugees and asylum seekers. Our core American values of providing protection and welcome to those fleeing persecution have been continually threatened by policy changes to how the U.S. immigration courts operate, the reduction of humanitarian programs and statuses, and adjustments in how the State department processes visa applications and enforces immigration laws. 

Your donation will fund advocacy and litigation to defend the rights of refugees and other displaced persons, promote accountability and transparency in government, and ensure that the U.S. upholds its legal obligations to protect the rights of those seeking safety and protection.