The Notre Dame de Namure University (NDNU) campus in Belmont is set to temporarily house up to 36 Afghan refugees as part of a pilot program.
Refugees are slated to arrive this month as part of the partnership involving international organizations Every Campus A Refuge and the International Rescue Committee (IRC), the university said in a statement. The organizations will collaborate with the university to offer resources such as housing, food, and social support as they navigate the resettlement process. Refugees will live on campus for a period of up to 90 days as they transition into permanent housing, the university said.
NDNU is the first university on the West Coast to offer such a program.
The refugees came to the U.S. via the Biden Administration’s Operation Allies Welcome.
“Many of the refugees worked alongside the U.S. government in Afghanistan, providing critical support for the past two decades,” according to NDNU.
Jordane Tofighi, IRC in Oakland Director, said the refugees “escaped unimaginably dangerous circumstances during last year’s evacuation.”
“As they begin to rebuild their lives here in Northern California, the support of our community is essential,” Tofighi said. “We are grateful to NDNU for welcoming them to campus.”
NDNU President Beth Martin called the pilot progrm “an important effort” that aligns with the Catholic university’s “founding core principles of social justice.”
“NDNU is committed to being a leader in values-based higher education and call on our peer institutions to join us in this important effort,” Martin said.
Disclaimer: Adam Alberti, the publisher of Climate Magazine, is Managing Director at Singer Associates, Inc. NDNU is represented by Singer Associates.
Photo credit: NDNU