First Afghan refugees arriving in Owensboro this weekend

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Published: Oct. 13, 2021 at 1:22 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 13, 2021 at 7:11 PM CDT
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OWENSBORO, Ky. (WFIE) - The first Afghan refugees will arrive this weekend in Owensboro.

“We’re getting our first Afghan arrivals, we have two of them coming this weekend,” Anna Allen, director of the International Center of Kentucky’s Owensboro location said. “We are working on getting their housing secure, getting their apartments set up, making sure they have furniture, dishes, towels, whatever they need for when they get here.”

Allen says that the two refugees are both adult men. She says their families are still in Afghanistan.

“They’ll have a case manager ready who is going to be with them for their first 90 days in the country,” Allen said. “They’ll kind of act as a social worker for them. Then the next day she’ll be back there for the first home visit.”

Allen says that there are several home visits made in the first 90 days to make sure the refugees are adjusting to life in America.

The case manager will be the closest contact for these refugees. Allen says they will meet lots of people through classes, work or just general activities in the community.

“The first week they get here, they’ll have their first home visit, they’ll get an intake, they’ll start with cultural orientation classes,” Allen said. “We have about 15 cultural orientation classes that we’ll do with them.”

Allen says each refugee will have varying levels of understanding of the English language. English as second language classes is being offered to all refugees.

Since it was announced that refugees would be coming to Owensboro, the International Center has been accepting donations. Allen says they are amazed by the contributions made by the community.

“We are receiving a lot of donations and it has been amazing to see so much support from the community,” she said. “We requested household goods, furniture, clothing, hygiene items, cleaning supplies and Owensboro has delivered.”

[100 Afghan refugees coming to Owensboro]

As previously reported, the International Center of Kentucky has been preparing for about 100 refugees to arrive in Owensboro.

Allen says that the first two will arrive this weekend, with the first man arriving Saturday. After that, refugees will come to Owensboro periodically through March of 2022.

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