This workshop will provide information on who refugees are, the different agencies involved in the refugee resettlement process, the vetting process, and laws and policies that support refugee resettlement program. This workshop will also explore the economic impact of refugees in our community. Refugees bring an entrepreneurial spirit, which not only aligns with American ideals, but is greater than the American average. Target Audience: Individuals involved in designing services to refugees and the Boise community.
Introduction to Moth Storytelling Hannah Campbell, The Moth Education Program Melissa Brown, The Moth Education Program This interactive workshop is an introduction to the art and craft of personal storytelling. Participants will be introduced to Moth techniques and principles for shaping true, personal stories. After hearing a sample story by a veteran storyteller, participants will engage in various brainstorming activities to discover their own story ideas, and will connect with one another along the way. The Moth believes that sharing stories is an act of courage and generosity, and we hope you’ll join us!
One Refugee: Moving on to College and a Meaningful Career Raymon Burton, One Refugee, Exec. Director of Operations Amy Wylie, One Refugee, Exec. Director of Education
Come learn about One Refugee, based in Salt Lake City, UT. One Refugee provides holistic services to college students from a refugee background to assist them in successfully completing their degrees and transitioning into a meaningful career upon completion of that degree. In this session, college students from a refugee background (and interested service providers and academic counselors) will learn how students can apply to and receive wrap-around financial and other services to assist them in finding success in college. How do you measure prosperity and integration? Come and discuss this and similar questions. Target Audience: College (and High School senior) students from a refugee background Target Audience: College and high school senior students from a refugee background, service providers and academic counselors (high school and college)
Unpacking Accessibility: Listening to the Perspectives of Resettled Women and Girls Liyah Babyan, Diversity Steering Committee of Twin Falls, Idaho Chair for the Armenian National Committee of America, Owner (Oohlala-shop.com) CEO MakePeace Stella Okeck, Boise State University Heidi Lehmann, HIAS, Director Gender and GBV Programming
This workshop is co-designed and led by resettled refugee women who are part of the Advisory Group for the Listening to Refugee Women and Girls Project. Participants will learn about the multiple sources of private and state violence identified by different refugee communities in Idaho through the Listening Session Project, with a focus on domestic violence. Supported by a grant from the NoVo Foundation and guided by an Advisory Group of girls and women who’ve gone through the resettlement process, Listening Sessions are being held in in five states with up to 500 resettled girls and women, with the first set of Listening Sessions taking place in Boise and Twin Falls. Through the presentation of key findings, a brief case study and a moderated panel discussion participants will explore what makes a service or program ‘accessible’ and reflect on the accessibility of current service delivery models for resettled women who are surviving domestic violence. Toolkit Development for Healthcare Providers Margaret Mortimer, Family Medicine Residency of Idaho, Medical Provider Jamie Perry Strain, Family Medicine Residency of Idaho, Director of Program Management Ryan Lipscomb, SaintAlphonsus Center for Global Health and Healing, Clinic Manager & Program Administrator
Neighbors United is a Boise collaborative working to support people who have arrived with refugee status. Individuals, community leaders, organizations and companies work together to determine how to promote prosperity for the refugee community in Boise. As part of the Neighbors United health sub committee, the workshop organizers identified a need to offer resources to health care providers in the metropolitan area to improve abilities and competency to take care of culturally diverse and non English speaking population, specifically refugees. The goal of this workshop is to build outreach resources and outreach support to improve the care that is provided to refugee populations in our community. This will be an interactive session to build a model with the benefit of conference attendees input and backgrounds to move an effective action plan forward that can be shared widely.
Supporting Multilingual Students' Writing Amber Warrington, Boise State University, Assistant Professor
This session will focus on instructional strategies to support multilingual students’ writing in K-12, higher education, adult education, or out-of-school settings. The session will provide participants with opportunities to practice the strategies and think through ways to implement the strategies in their instructional settings. Target Audience: Those teaching writing (k-12 schools, higher education, adult education, or out-of-school settings)
Arrival: An Introduction to Cultural Mapping John Cox, University of Delaware, Assistant Professor, National Geographic, Explorer Andrew Bale, Dickinson College, Lecturer in Art Palina Louangketh, Boise State University, Adjunct Professor
This cultural mapping participatory workshop seeks to provide a better understanding of how refugees can share the story of their journey and arrival into the United States. Participants will learn how to preserve their stories using photography/video and how to share them with a broad audience to increase cultural identity awareness and community engagement. Target audience: refugees who are willing to share their story about their journey and arrival into the United States, anyone interested in learning how to share their stories and better understand their neighbors
Our District's Pathway to Integration for Refugees Charlene Lui, Granite School District, Director of Education Equity Jadee Talbot, Granite School District, Associate Director Community Centers Participants will be involved in learning about effective English language development strategies for refugee students. Also, a scope and sequence will be shared that outlines the essential skills needed to help newcomers transition to their home school. In addition, results gathered from our two generations learning project will be shared. *In 2018, Granite School District’s Tumaini Welcome and Transition Center was recognized as a national best practice by the Office of Refugee Resettlement. The components of this model will be shared in this session. Target Audience: Educators, administrators, community organizations and agencies that work with Refugees.
How Refugee Advocacy Groups and Utah Lawyers Empower Refugees James W. McConkie, Parker and McConkie Bradley H. Parker, Parker and McConkie This workshop will describe how refugee advocacy groups in Utah have worked together to help make legal resources more readily available to refugees and protect them against harassment and discrimination.
Hospitality in an Age of Hostility Nick Armstrong, Glocal Community Partners, Co-Director Laura Armstrong, Glocal Community Partners, Co-Director Reshma Kamal, Islamic Center of Boise, Director of Humanitarian and Refugee
The “Hospitality in an Age of Hostility” workshop aims to address and discuss two basic questions:
Are we really living in an age of hostility or is this hyperbole?
What does empathy and hospitality have to do with hostility?
By weaving stories and ideas from those most impacted by social fragmentation and polarization (including stories from refugees) with information sharing, a discussion panel and a participation exercise, we hope to address and facilitate discussion around these tow questions with the hope that participants of the workshop will gain a greater understanding of our current social landscape, foster empathy and expansion of hospitality as a way of countering the trends of social polarization and tribalism. Target Audience: Everyone and anyone, but if there was to be a primary audience it would be leaders of the various communities and educators represented at the conference as their sphere of influence could help to promote the understanding and change in attitudes we are promoting in the workshop.
Supporting Cultural Identity and Pride Kathy Tidwell, Tidwell Social Work Services, Development Director Issa Ntakarutimana, Boise State University MSW Student Intern
Culture is a vital aspect of people's lives. It influences their views on life and their values. Culture is ingrained in everyone, from how we dress, how we speak or the food we eat. It is important to understand other cultures as it is a foundation of building diversity, healthy interpersonal relationships, a strong community and ensures that everyone is treated with dignity & respect - especially those who are vulnerable. Most importantly, people must recognize the healing impact of “Belonging” and acknowledge that everyone must be valued regardless of their cultural background or identity.The goal of this workshop is to educate providers, students, and community leaders about other the complexities of the cross-cultural experience. Target Audience: Providers who work with Refugees, Community leaders, Students
Bridging the Education Gap: What's Missing in Education Opportunities for Adult Refugees? Fern VanMaren, College of Western Idaho, ESL Supervisor Stephanie Marlow, Boise State University Intensive English Program, Director
Members of the Neighbors United Adult Education Committee will lead participants in an interactive workshop to explore current English language educational resources available to serve adult refugees interested in or in need of various educational programs. Participants will then collectively identify current gaps in the local Adult English educational services; discuss how these gaps pertain to the refugees served in each participants’ respective fields; and generate constructive feedback that will guide the Neighbors United Adult Education Committee’s strategic vision as they collaborate to bridge the educational gaps in order to meet current community needs. Throughout the workshop, participants will engage in multiple networking opportunities with colleagues from across different agencies and support services. Each participant will leave the workshop with a copy of the 2018 Adult Education Road Map and a list of contact information.
Target audience: Workers and volunteers from all kinds of agencies who interact with adult refugees who would benefit from English classes. K-12 school staff who would like to be better able to refer parents to appropriate English classes. High school teachers and counselors advising/helping students transition to further education. Refugees who would like to know what is available to them and their neighbors, and provide input on what is needed in this arena.
Achieving Citizenship for Refugees with Disabilities Rabiou Manzo, International Rescue Committee, Immigration Services Supervisor Kristin Ruether, International Rescue Committee, Immigartion Case Worker Kathy Railsback, Kathryn Raisback, Attorney at Law, PLLC, Attorney
The workshop will explain how disabled refugees can receive a waiver of the English and civics portion of the citizenship exam-- and why this is important. If refugees do not become a citizen within 7 years of arrival, they become ineligible for certain critical types of benefits. The workshop will explain how medical professional and legal workers/ attorneys must work together to prepare the medical waiver form, known as the N-648. The presenters will explain common pitfalls and how they can be avoided with careful coordination and preparation. Target Audience: Medical service providers, case workers.
Advocacy in Action: Assets Based Strategies for Refugee Youth Integration Alexx Goeller, Utah Refugee Services Refugee youth are one of the largest growing populations in schools in the United States. Educators must alter the way they view interactions and services for these youth to a more assets-based approach. Through this session, educators and community partners will learn about assets-based models for effective integration of refugee youth in the state of Utah. They will also learn about some key initiatives that can help them better serve refugee youth in their programs.
Supporting Refugees in Rural Idaho Laurence P Gebhardt,Bridges Idaho Refugee Support,President Zeze Rwasama,CSI Refugee Center, Director JesseKiboko,Idaho State University, Immigration Advisor/Coordinator
Rural communities in Idaho experience population loss, economic opportunity reduction, and related stress and anxiety. Refugees can provide a unique set of experience, skills, motivation, global/cultural connections and enthusiasm to help revitalize rural areas. Come to learn about how rural communities can build refugee support, how refugees can connect with family-owned business, farms and ranches, add entrepreneurial skills, and more. Discover how refugees with unique skills such as healthcare, information technology and others can be recruited to consider moving to a rural setting. Make connections to broaden and deepen career-technical education for rural youth and job changers along with refugee families and children.
All of Us or None of Us: Refugee Led Grassroots Community Mobilizing Liyah Babayan, Diversity Steering Committee of Twin Falls, Idaho Chair for the Armenian National Committee of America, Small Business, Owner (Oohlala-shop.com) CEO MakePeace Stella Okech, Boise State University Winnie Christensen, Miss Africa Idaho, Director Yara Slaton, Idaho Coalition Against Sexual and Domestic Violence, Program Specalist Aisha Bain, Resistance Communications, Co-founder
This interactive panel discussion will be led by refugee women who will take participants through a journey of overcoming community and local government barriers, what is means to lead community mobilization efforts, what it means to create alliances and coalitions across refugee, immigrant, disabled, Hispanic, LGBT, and other historically marginalized communities in Idaho, and how these efforts have shifted and transformed community and local government efforts and relationships to better Idaho communities as a whole. Presenters will also engage participants in raising the voices and visibility of refugee women and girls across communities and how efforts can meaningfully continue across Idaho. Examples will cover a wide range of efforts from creating an officially recognized Diversity Committee in the City of Twin Falls; hosting refugee women’s groups and diversifying employment opportunities; advocating with local service providers to build bridges to refugee communities; university campus diversity, awareness and inclusion; and refugee girls leadership programming.
Integrating English Language Acquisition with Workplace Education and Training: A Seven Step Model Trevi Hardy, College of Western Idaho, ESL and Career Pathways Program Manager Molly Valceschini, International Rescue Committee, Career Pathways Sr. Specialist Sanela Hubijar, Saint Alphonsus Hospital, Training Manager EVS Trinity Hospital Health
The Environmental Services Pre-apprenticeship is a community partnership between College of Western Idaho, International Rescue Committee, Saint Alphonsus Hospital and local workforce agencies. The pre-apprenticeship is a contextual English language course that trains refugees and immigrants for employment at Saint Alphonsus in the Environmental Services Department and a nationally registered apprenticeship concurrent with that employment. Participants in this session will learn how a seven-step career pathway model utilizing braided funding may be deployed to provide integrated education and training with wrap-around supports for refugee participants. Project partners and pre-apprenticeship participants, who include individuals who have lived the refugee experience, will discuss benefits of the model and lessons learned. Workshop participants will have the opportunity to explore how braided funding and partnerships similar to the EVS model might work for their projects. Target audience is educators, employers, agencies and community organizations interested in leveraging partnerships to implement education and training initiatives with braided funding and meaningful supports for immigrants and refugees.
Housing: Community Building Through Compassion and Education Katie Foster, International Rescue Committee, Housing Specialist DaNel Jones, International Rescue Committee, Housing Specialist and Family Support Sara Bonfanti, International Rescue Committee, Casework Supervisor The International Rescue Committee typically receives 2-5 correspondences a week from key partners regarding the housing needs of their refugee clients. We welcome these calls and appreciate the interest of all community members in solving the challenging issues surrounding housing for refugees. The goal of this workshop is complete transparency with all stakeholders on the process of housing and all other housing department practices and procedures. We have invited notable property managers and refugee clients to join on a panel and share their experience working together.
Session 4 Self-help Trainings for Trauma Reduction and Resiliency Building Ryan J. Hulbert, EPIC Psychological Services, Owner and President Marwan S. Sweedan, Agency Saint Alphonsus Medical Center, Infectious Control Officer Irina Chernyshkova MD., Ambitions of Idaho,CBRS, becoming re-credentialed in the US as MD.
This workshop will be an engaging and interactive experience for the participants to learn how a new resource, a small book entitled “Drivers’ Ed for the Brain: Finding greater peace and joy," has been used so far in Idaho to help reduce trauma and build resiliency in adolescents and adults. Presenters and panelists will share experiences related to individual and group efforts to strengthen people related to the concepts of the book in English, Arabic, Russian, and Spanish. Participants will receive a download of the book and share ideas concerning expanding the possible use of this and other self-help resources to help Idaho refugees.
Fair Housing, Landlord-Tenant Law, & Civil Rights Lindsy Glick, Idaho Human Rights Commission, Bilingual Civil Rights Investigator Ross Schellhaas, Idaho Human Rights Commission, Civil Rights Investigator Zoe Ann Olsen, Intermountain Fair Housing Council, Executive Director Josh Taylor, Concordia School of Law, Profressor Professor Josh Taylor from Concordia School of Law, Lindsy Glick and Ross Schellhaas from The Idaho Human Rights Commission, and Executive Director Zoe Ann Olson from the Intermountain Fair Housing Council will present on the basic civil rights and housing law and protections in Idaho, and how they apply to everyday life.
Tools & Strategies for Community Action to Counter White Nationalist Movements Lindsay Schubiner, Western States Center, Momentum Program Director Amy Herzfeld-Copple, Western States Center, Deputy Director of Programs & Strategic Initiatives
As white nationalism increasingly shapes mainstream political debates in the U.S., the stakes are rising for communities where anti-immigrant, anti-refugee, anti-Muslim, and anti-Semitic organizing is occurring. This interactive workshop will explore organizing tools and case studies to prepare participants to respond quickly and effectively to different types of far-right activity in their communities. It will provide space for local organizers to brainstorm new strategies and discuss their ideas, challenges, and learnings with others working on campuses and in communities threatened by white nationalism.
Experiential Learning for Adults with Varied Literacy, and the Power of a Community of Practice Katie Painter, Global Gardens, Program Manager
Katie Painter of Global Gardens will present the results of several years of work with a nationwide community of practice around refugee farmer education. While we work with farmers specifically, these tools and techniques are applicable to refugee adult learners in any context. Participants will learn about some of the overall needs of adult learners with minimal formal schooling and varied language and literacy skills. They will practice hands-on teaching techniques such as role playing, structured dialogue, use of realia, picture stories, sequencing, peer teaching, and more. We will discuss benefits gained from being a part of a community of practice with others engaged in similar work, and we will discuss how participants might form such a community with their own colleagues. Finally, we will offer a short summary of the Global Gardens program so that service providers whose clients may be interested, will know about the programs we offer. Participants will receive a refugee teaching handbook and/or links to these materials online. Bridge to Integration Tecle Gebremicheal, Boise State University Joel Ryman, Gates of Hope Foundation, Director of Development Deborah Ryman, LMSW, Gates of Hope Foundation, Director of Operations Aubrey Stephan, Gates of Hope Foundation, Youth Outreach Coordinator
Bridge to Integration is designed to challenge attendees to go a little further and meet a stranger over the bridge. Understanding the differences preventing integration in the community, diversity and differences finding common place in-between. Target audience would be any nonprofit employees in the Treasure Valley, volunteers who work around refugees/immigrants.
Investigating Previous Contact with Law Enforcement or Immigration Authorities Benjamin Stein, Immigrant Justice Idaho, Legal Director Maria Andrade, Immigrant Justice Idaho / Andrade Legal, Executive Director / Owner Kathryn Railsback, Railsback, PLLC, Attorney
When a refugee has contact with law enforcement or immigration enforcement in the past, it is critical that the individual and those who seek to advocate for them understand exactly what happened and the legal consequences that might follow. Often these interactions with law enforcement or immigration enforcement have long-lasting consequences that the individual is not aware of. This workshop will explain what kind of contacts with law enforcement or immigration enforcement that need to be investigated and how individuals and advocates can obtain these records.
SPECIAL SESSION (45 minutes) - Domestic Refugee Health Jenna Beeler, MPH is a Data Management Specialist, Eagle Medical Services, LLC at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
This presentation will give an overview of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Immigrant, Refugee, and Migrant Health Branch, discussing its regulatory and public health mission. Additionally, this presentation will provide information on overseas and domestic partnerships, and discuss, in detail, the domestic activities most pertinent to state and local partners working in refugee health.
Identity and Investment in Elder Refugee Language Learning Casey Keck, Boise State University, Associate Chair, English Department
Though smaller in number when compared to children and working-aged adults, elder refugees` are a particularly vulnerable part of the U.S. newcomer population. Often described as "aging out of place,” the elder refugee experience can involve not only a loss of one's home and material possessions, but also one's status as the most knowledgeable member of the family. Refugee elders face additional pressures to learn a new language late in life and to pursue U.S. citizenship. Nevertheless, few studies to date have examined identity and investment in elder refugee education. During this workshop, I will present preliminary findings of my own research on elder refugee language acquisition, and I will offer recommendations for supporting elders in their efforts to learn English and obtain citizenship. Workshop attendees will have a chance to share their own experiences working with elders and to discuss how language programs might work in conjunction with other social services to support elders in their efforts to maintain self-sufficiency. Target audience is language educators.
The Invisible Stakeholder Pascal Sabimana, International Rescue Committee, Interpreter Kamil Khan, M.P.A., International Rescue Committee, Employment Specialist
The Invisible Stakeholder workshop highlights the liaising relationship of interpreters between service providers and their refugee beneficiaries. Issues of vicarious trauma, interpreter neutrality and protection, cultural communication competency, and agency recommendations to improve organizational linguistic infrastructures will be addressed. With a culmination of 10 years interpretation experience in three continents between the two presenters, this workshop aims to protect the interests of interpreters while improving community connection between the service agency and its clientele. Without the invisible stakeholder, it would be infeasible to abridge linguistic and cultural barriers between service providers and their refugee clientele. The target audience for the workshop are staff members from refugee resettlement agencies, medical service providers, school districts, local nonprofits, housing authorities, law enforcement agencies, and any other entity that has direct exposure the refugee population.
Engaging Newcomer Students with Their Learning Jaimie Skinner, West Ada School District, EL Teacher and Case Manager
The workshop will focus on student engagement in school and how to empower students to work towards a successful future using student created goals, relevant and inspiring texts to identify the strengths and character traits of others who have overcome hardship and utilizing leadership opportunities to build self-reliance and growth. The target audience would be educators and secondary would be anyone who works in the education with EL students. Hands-On Training for Meetings with Elected Officials Julianne Donnelly Tzul, International Rescue Committee, Executive Director Megan Schwab, International Rescue Committee, Community Engagement Specialist
This workshop will be a very hands-on training on how to conduct a professional and effective meeting with an elected official in support of refugees and immigrants. The workshop will include training on general principles of positive, strengths-based messaging; rules of demeanor expected in these meetings; and typical practices. The training will include roll plays (… with a star cast of mock-elected officials). It will include review of reports, data and graphics that support refugees and immigrants, and training on how to reference them effectively in a meeting. IRC will be recruiting volunteers from this training to accompany us on meetings with Idaho State Legislators and representatives of the Idaho national Congressional delegation. We hope for strong refugee as well as service provider / community member participation.The target audience is both refugees / former refugees, and community members who want to exercise the power of their citizenship to be active participants in our democracy. TOOLBOX™ -Creating a world of kind, connected human beings Jack Varin, Retired Juvenile Judge, Graduate of U of I, B.S. in Business and JD in Law Sally Suter, Retired Family Nurse Practitioner, BSN Jacksonville University and Nursing Masters University of Florida. Becky Carson Eisenman, TOOLBOX Trainer, BA in Elementary Education Boise State University
TOOLBOX gives individuals 12 keys or strategies that enable them to access their own ability to solve their problems and create the life they want for themselves, families, and children. This access empowers each person to self-regulate to be the kind of person they want to be and control their words and actions. This unique approach results in the ability to work through challenges from the past and present in all areas of one's life: self, relationships, family, office and community. Through these problem-solving strategies, we create a more compassionate caring community.
Idaho Office for refugees
1607 W. Jefferson St. Boise, ID 83702 208.336.4222