No stranger to resettling Afghan refugees, California agency prepares for influx

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SAN DIEGO (Border Report) — The International Rescue Committee in San Diego has been resettling Afghan refugees for a few weeks now, but it expects a lot more in the coming weeks following the collapse of the Afghan government.

The State Department is planning on bringing at least 22,000 Afghan refugees to the United States, and agencies such as the International Rescue Committee are ready, Executive Director Donna Duvin said.

“We are receiving Afghan special visa holders already and have been doing that for a while,” said Duvin. “We anticipate there will be opportunities for others to be assigned to our office in the future and in addition to that, we also see a number of special immigrant visa holders who have also made their way outside and are coming to the U.S. on their own.”

Afghans continue to wait at Kabul International Airport as thousands of Afghans rush to flee the Afghan capital of Kabul, on August 18, 2021. (Photo by Aykut Karadag/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Duvin said they normally get a two-week notice before refugees arrive, but in this instance, they’ll get 24 to 48 hours.

“We’re able to set them up with housing support to make sure kids are enrolled in school and that they can get medical checks they need to have, often times they’ve been traveling for long periods of time and they have conditions or have prescriptions they need refilled.”

And according to Duvin, they will also help refugees get jobs so they can get assimilated into the community a lot faster.

“Now our greatest concern is the number of people that still need to get out of Afghanistan and we will continue to provide that support for incoming special immigrant visa holders as that continues into the future,” she said.

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