World Grace Project empowers indigenous leaders to resource, develop and integrate our refugee and immigrant communities toward self-sufficiency in the Cedar Valley.
Ensure that refugee community members become integrated into area business and employment opportunities
Providing a welcoming community regardless of race, religion, status or background.
Collecting a voice of the refugee/immigrant community and helping that voice to be heard.
Connecting ethnic leaders to valuable resources in the Cedar Valley community leading to a wrap-around care model.
Grace is unique. It is giving without receiving. It is paying it forward. This project takes margins found in current economic models and creates windows of grace for those needing a bridge to opportunity. It engages the community in these windows of opportunity allowing everyone the opportunity to give back to those around them.
Waterloo is the most diverse city in Iowa, making it challenging to bridge all the gaps in human services. The World Grace Project’s primary goal is to support workforce development for vulnerable or low-income populations of Waterloo, while raising awareness of cultural diversity by engaging the greater community in the project.
Second we assist our area newcomers become integrated into the Cedar Valley. Our Social Services offer a centralized support community where leaders from various ethnic groups can get assistance helping their community to reach local resources, organizations or businesses. Services are the primary way we connect with ethnic minority communities to find out what barriers are keeping them from success.
Refugee admission is at an all-time low; however, thousands are still seeking asylum. Unfortunately, the dip in refugee admissions causes a backlog of government paper processes for those seeking humanitarian parole post-Covid.
Refugees are automatically granted work status, which allows them to provide for themselves and their families. Refugees are automatically granted work status, which enables them to provide for themselves and their families. Paroles are not as fortunate as refugees, even though their situations can be equally grim.
“Services allow non-English speakers to feel a sense of belonging and matter in this community/country while we continue to learn new skills.”
“I don’t have to worry about not having an interpreter or calling the wrong people. Without the service, I won’t know who to turn to and get help. I probably just leave all the emails or what needed to get done due to a lack of knowledge on how to process it. I’m very grateful for the service.”
"We say thank you to every member of the organization. May God bless us and protect us so that we can continue to do what we are doing, thank God, because you chose to help me, I was really happy for yesterday, I was very satisfied, I will continue to help you, I pray that we can grow to do more work, thank you May God bless you."
“Hello to all members of the World Grace Project. I would like to thank Karen, Wilkin and the others whose names I do not know. We thank God for the people we are for the way you help me and I am really happy. May God always bless this organization and all the members and continue to help those who are in need, thank you, thank you, thank you very much. ”
In 2019, a survey identified barriers to the Burmese refugee community reaching the workforce, including the top three obstacles: lack of workforce experience, language, and lack of resumé. Before getting to the U.S., 46% of respondents had jobs in farming, followed by 21% in teaching. (Galloway, 2019) Overall, 48 percent of this resettled refugee population surveyed in a workforce needs assessment were not employed. (Galloway, 2019)
Transportation and child care are known barriers to the workforce for the refugee community that also need to be addressed.
We have many ways to join the movement. Share this page or like our Facebook page for more updates.
Galloway, D. R. (2019). Child Care & Workforce Needs Assessment of the Refugee Community in Waterloo. Waterloo: Community Foundation of NE Iowa.