August 25, 2021
IRCO stands in solidarity with our Afghan staff members and communities facing injustice, harm, and threat as the Taliban has seized most of Afghanistan. We are horrified at the injustices and harm already experienced by the Afghan people, even more so in the last few weeks.
In all their diversity, the people of Afghanistan find themselves at the toxic intersection of decades of war, political and economic instability, the total collapse of essential services for clean water to safe health care. Moreover, the devastating impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic add to the misery and gravity of the situation faced by the Afghan people.
This situation reminds many of us, who have fled our war-torn countries, and the challenging, painful, beyond worrisome time for you and your family. We will continue to work with our communities, government agencies to bring the people to safety. We want you to know we are here for you and want to help in any way we can.
March 22, 2021
March 22, 2021
January 21, 2021
December 18, 2020
IRCO’s longevity is rooted in our ability to respond to the challenges that confront immigrants and refugees.
December 11, 2020
We create the foundation for families to thrive when they come to the US, like our children’s programs that help kids prepare for kindergarten.
December 8, 2020
This year has been a challenge for everyone. At IRCO, we still look ahead—and are empowered by the strength of the communities we work with.
October 22, 2020
Registering students now for the 2020-2021 school year of the Greater Middle East Center Language School!
September 22, 2020
Help us set up over 300 students for success this school year!
September 9, 2020
Health Equity and Resources in a Time of Crisis
July 20, 2020
As soon as COVID-19 hit, IRCO pivoted to respond to our new reality. Our staff and programs have adapted quickly to ensure that our families continue getting the support they need. Click below for links to stories about how our programs continue to evolve and serve our communities through the pandemic.
June 5, 2020
We are grieving for George Floyd, his family and loved ones. We share the collective pain and anguish our communities are feeling. As refugees and immigrants, we stand together in condemning this horrific act of racism and killing of George Floyd and the many other Black Lives killed by law enforcement.
Click below to read the rest of our statement.
March 19, 2020
IRCO is gathering essential resources specifically directed toward immigrant and refugee community needs. We will continue to update this page with information to help our communities stay healthy and navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. Click below for more details.
March 16, 2020
We are in this together. The health and safety of our communities—the immigrants and refugees we serve, our dedicated staff and our volunteers—continue to be our top priority. The COVID-19 public health crisis in Oregon is evolving rapidly, and we are constantly monitoring the situation, following guidelines, and adapting to best care for everyone in our community. We have made the difficult decision to close our offices to the public until further notice. Click below for more details.
March 15, 2020
Community health is one of IRCO's core values, and we are taking proactive steps to ensure that our communities remain as safe and healthy as possible as we monitor the spread of COVID-19. We are closely following the guidelines of local, state and national health authorities. In line with these guidelines, we are postponing all of our 250+ person gatherings scheduled statewide.
February 6, 2020
CWP is seeking a videographer to create a client testimonial video for CWP to demonstrate the impact of its work.
Interested in this paid opportunity? Click on "View PDF" for more information.
Please email questions to Jihane Nami, at firstname.lastname@example.org
February 4, 2020
“I’m here to support and motivate our future generations.”
Lovely was a community health nurse in the Philippines, delivering care to the most vulnerable populations in areas of the country that had little to no access to care.
“We’d go up mountains and help people in the rural areas give birth, give vaccinations, and address all other needs. Those rewarding experiences made me want to continue being a nurse in the United States.”
Lovely immigrated to the United States in 2015, to reunite with her husband. She tried to figure out how to get re-credentialed as a nurse but was told she’d have to go back to college, as her degree didn’t transfer.
“I already went to school; there was no way I could afford another degree.”
In 2017, Lovely found out she qualified for IRCO’s Immigrant Nurse Credentialing (INC) Program.
Lovely was a part of INC’s Cohort 2 and graduated in December 2019. Now she’s studying hours every night with her colleagues preparing for National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX), to get her nursing license.
“If I wouldn’t have known about IRCO’s INC Program, I would have never been able to become a nurse in this country to live my dream providing care for those who need it.” Now, Lovely’s own successes have her twins, Lily and Rose, excited to become doctors themselves.
“Nursing is perfect for me. I’m grateful IRCO is here to help guide me into my passion.”
January 13, 2020
"We may be refugees today, but we’re your contributing members of society tomorrow," expressed IRCO Executive Director Mr. Lee Po Cha in front of the Multnomah County Board of Commissioners last week, in support of a resolution to formally request continued resettlement of refugees in Multnomah County.
We are grateful for the support of Multnomah County, and will continue to uplift, engage, and provide the crucial resources refugees need to build new beginnings in the United States.
You can read the full article about the resolution, and see more photos by clicking "Read More" below.
January 10, 2020
IRCO Slavic Center Heritage Festivity was a huge success!
Thank you to all who came and enjoyed our celebration last night, our performers, sponsors, and volunteers for making this event happen!
Special shout out Lori Stegmann, Multnomah County Commissioner, District 4, Portland Police Bureau Chief Jami Resch, Representative Mark Meek, Clackamas Community College Board Member Irene Konev, and representatives from Governor Kate Brown's office for coming to celebrate our Slavic and Eastern European immigrant and refugee communities.
The support of our community really shined through last night.
December 20, 2019
Our merchandise is now available for purchase!
We have T-shirts and sweatshirts for sale, in sizes Small to 3XL (while supplies last).
IRCO employees always receive a 20% discount on their items.
If you are in Portland, drop by the IRCO Main office at 10301 NE Glisan St. We accept cash and credit card payments.
If you need to purchase online, visit the link below to submit a request and we can have your item shipped directly to you via USPS. We accept Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express.
December 18, 2019
Last weekend, our Asian Immigrant & Refugee Youth Council - AIRYC debuted Oh Brother, Mother!, a youth-led production months in the making. Through storytelling, comedy and dance, Oh Brother, Mother! beautifully depicted heritage, identity and the immigration experience.
Congratulations to IRCO AIRYC for this huge accomplishment!
December 10, 2019
On December 9th, Parkrose High School Class of 1969 presented three of our community food pantries: Shaver Elementary, Sacramento Elementary, and Parkrose Middle School, with generous donations to help us continue to provide these crucial resources for our community members.
We're so grateful for the generosity and dedication of the class of 1969. Last night, they showed us what community looks like.
Thank you again to the Parkrose Class of 1969!
November 26, 2019
Thank you to all who sold at, attended, sponsored, played at, displayed art at, and supported our first annual From These Hands Bazaar!
It was a day filled with community members supporting community members, beautiful displays of art, and music.
Stay tuned for further announcements of more From These Hands events and how you can get involved!
November 19, 2019
December 16 | 7 PM | Milagro Theater
A play about bromance & strong women.
Through the hidden stories of their respective Nepali and Vietnamese mothers, two Asian-American best friends will take you on a journey to discover heritage, identity, and the immigration experience. "Oh Brother, Mother!" is written and produced by the Asian Immigrant & Refugee Youth Council (AIR-YC). The play will feature famous Asian musical numbers and original artwork by Portland's Asian Youth. Get ready to eat dried squid, dodge wooden spoons, and enjoy the show!
AIR-YC is a youth-led body of Asian high school students form programs at the Immigrant & Refugee Community Organization (IRCO). Our vision is to elevate the communities that represent us, and we make it our mission to explore the diversity of Asian cultures, unite our communities, and tell our stories.
All proceeds from the event will go to AIR-YC
Click the link below for ticket information!
November 14, 2019
Many thanks to City Club of Portland for inviting our Africa House Director Djimet Dogo to speak on his own experiences coming to this country, as well as the troubles today's refugees in Oregon are facing.
Missed Djimet's interview? Click on the box below to watch his segment!
November 7, 2019
We are now on Instagram!
Follow us at https://www.instagram.com/irco_updates/ or @irco_updates for information about upcoming events, our programming, and more!
November 5, 2019
Please join us at the Slavic Heritage Festivity for cultural performances, food, community announcements, and activities for all ages!
Hosted by the IRCO Slavic Center.
Thursday, January 9, 2020 from 6PM-8PM
IRCO Sokhom Tauch Community Center
To learn more about how you can become a sponsor or other questions about the event, contact: Andrii Nagornyi at email@example.com
Buy tickets here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/slavic-heritage-festi...
November 4, 2019
Join us this Saturday November 9th at the Sokhom Tauch Community Center for our 2019 Health Fair!
Please view the PDF below for more information
Questions? Please contact Ayni Amir at firstname.lastname@example.org
We'll see you there!
September 23, 2019
We will be hosting our fall 2019 Citizenship Day on October 19th from 9 AM to 3 PM! Join us at Village Church in Beaverton to get FREE citizenship application legal help. Already a citizen? Volunteer to help our community members start the citizenship process! Read more below.
September 19, 2019
Join us at our inaugural event, Saturday November 23rd, hosting artists from the local and international community! From These Hands aims to provide a space to feature the creative work of pan-immigrant and refugee artisans.
There will be handmade goods with live music and an art gallery, all supporting immigrants and refugees and hosted by IRCO. This event is FREE and open to the public. Follow the link for more information.
LOOKING FOR VENDORS! Email email@example.com for details to sign-up.
June 3, 2019
The Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization seeks proposals for an Action Research consultant for IRCO’s Trafficking Program. IRCO seeks a consultant or a firm with expertise in designing, implementing, evaluating, and iterating a plan for creating a Trafficking program in accordance with the requirements of the Office of Victims of Crime Comprehensive Services for Victims of All Forms of Human Trafficking Grant.
For more information, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org
Deadline for submissions: June 21, 2019
March 25, 2019
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion are the core guiding values in all of IRCO's work. To ensure that our organizational culture, policies and practices continue to be in line with these values, we are seeking proposals for an Organizational Equity Audit.
Deadline extended to April 19th
For more information, please reach out to email@example.com
January 7, 2019
We are pleased to announce that RISE (Refugee & Immigrant Services and Empowerment) Disability Legal Services has joined IRCO’s expanding Legal Services programs!
December 4, 2018
IRCO is proud to announce the newest member of our leadership, May Low. May is joining us to lead our rapidly growing IRCO Legal Services Program.
November 5, 2018
Please join us in welcoming Côi Vũ as IRCO's Asian Family Center Director! Côi was born in a refugee camp in Malaysia and is a first-generation refugee from Vietnam. She has lived and worked in Portland for almost four decades. Raised by her single mother and her aunties, Côi has dedicated the last 20 years connecting communities together, cross-collaborating with organizations to provide services to underserved groups of all ages in nonprofits, educational, private and public settings.
November 2, 2018
Join us in congratulating IRCO’s very own Isatou Barry! Isatou is one of the winners of Willamette Week’s Skidmore Prize, an annual award given to Portlanders, 35 and under, who are giving back to their communities through their nonprofit work.
November 1, 2018
This is our third year participating in Give!Guide, an annual fundraising campaign that helps Portland nonprofits make an impact. Your gift will change lives. In this year of uphill battles, we’ve become resilient and responsive. We will work together to strengthen our communities and build new beginnings for families. Click below to give to IRCO through Give!Guide.
November 1, 2018
We are proud to announce that we are this year's recipient of the Portland Monthly's Light A Fire Award for Exceptional Community Contribution! Everyone at IRCO contributed to this recognition and we’re honored to accept this award.
June 26, 2018
We are deeply troubled by the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the Muslim travel ban. Religious discrimination goes against our country’s founding principles and core values. IRCO will continue to welcome newcomers, celebrate diversity, and advocate for immigrant and refugee families.
April 3, 2018
A safe haven for immigrants and refugees of all backgrounds, we want to reassure our Muslim staff, clients, families and community that we are here to support and protect you. Anti-Muslim rhetoric or actions of any kind have no place in our city. We value our Muslim community members and the strength and diversity they bring to our society. We continue to work closely with police and schools to make sure families feel safe and welcome here, a city that belongs to all of us. Safety is vital and we ask all community members to stay alert. To learn more about the issue and action steps you can take, please click the button below.
November 3, 2017
We're thrilled to be part of Willamette Week's 2017 Give!Guide! When you give to IRCO, you're investing in our neighbors and our community. Together we can empower Oregon's newcomers to build new beginnings. Click below to give to IRCO through Give!Guide.
October 6, 2017
We are proud to work with Schoolhouse Electric & Supply Co., who hire our clients and help build new beginnings for immigrant and refugee families. “As a company, we value immigrants and refugees, not just as a resource for this company but as a resource for this country." Check out the Portland Monthly feature on Schoolhouse Electric!
October 5, 2017
As a provider of core services to students and families at Menlo Park, Mill Park, Ventura Park and Lincoln Park elementary schools, we are alarmed by the recent acts of vandalism at these schools. IRCO condemns hate in all forms and we are committed to creating safe spaces for our families. We will work with key stakeholders such as the school district and law enforcement to educate families at these schools about their rights, ensure that they are supported and protected, and create the safe school environment that all children deserve.
September 6, 2017
IRCO stands with the Dreamers who call this country home. These immigrant youth have spent the majority of their lives in the U.S. and are hard-working contributors to our community. IRCO joins our partners in defending Dreamers and asking Congress to provide permanent protection for these young people as they pursue their dreams.
August 17, 2017
SEPTEMBER 28, 2017
IRCO's Sokhom Tauch Community Center
10301 NE Glisan St. Portland OR 97220
Join us to explore the rich culture of Portland’s Tongan community! IRCO staff and community members from Tonga will share the history and traditions of their country — and the barriers faced by their community here in Portland. Come enjoy a taste of Tonga with music, food, cultural presentations, and Q&A with our presenters!
Click the READ MORE button to RSVP!
August 9, 2017
We are excited about our new grant from Northwest Area Foundation that will expand our financial education programming, helping more immigrants and refugees forge pathways to financial well-being and self-sufficiency!
"IRCO will enhance a core piece of its financial education program–designing tailored curriculum that fit the English language proficiency levels of its clients. The program helps participants understand the US banking system, as well as credit, debt, and personal budgets."
June 27, 2017
A day for immigrant & refugee leaders to discuss community needs & define priorities
Featuring guest speaker Michael Dembrow and panels on policy impacts & service provider responses
to issues such as housing, health, immigration and safety
COMMUNITY NEEDS ASSESSMENT
SATURDAY, JULY 8
8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
IRCO's Sokhom Tauch Community Center
10301 NE Glisan St. Portland OR 97220
June 2, 2017
IRCO's Djimet Dogo discusses heightened anti-Muslim harassment and hate speech following the May 26 MAX tragedy. “Muslims are good people,” he said. “We urge the community at large to work with us, to know us, who we are and then together we will work for the greatest good for our community.”
May 30, 2017
On behalf of IRCO Executive Director Lee Po Cha and Board of Directors, representing the communities we serve: We are horrified and our hearts are broken by the tragic event that took place at the Hollywood MAX Station late Friday afternoon, May 26, 2017. We grieve for the two brave men who lost their lives as they stood up and protected two teenage girls, one African American and the other a Muslim. Click below to read the whole statement.
May 30, 2017
Congratulations to IRCO Executive Director Lee Po Cha, who was one of three community leaders who received Senator Jeff Merkley's "Bending Toward Justice" Award on May 30, 2017.
May 22, 2017
KPTV 12 featured our City Parks Program, which provides a safe space for immigrant and refugee youth and prevents gang involvement. Somali Police Officer Khalid Ibrahim has become an important role model for the youth, increasing trust between the community and law enforcement. "I tell them 'hey you can do the same thing, don't give up, push yourself, go to school and stay away from gangs,'" said Ibrahim. "You can do what you want you can be a doctor, a police officer, or whatever."
April 4, 2017
A space for immigrant and refugee communities to come together to learn about their rights.
SATURDAY, APRIL 8, 2017
IRCO Community Center
10301 NE Glisan St
Gudeta Wak-Woya / 971.271.6553 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Kolini Fusitua / 971.271.6569 / email@example.com
March 21, 2017
Please join us for IRCO Asian Family Center's gala, "Bridging Communities"!
MAY 13, 2017 | 6:00 PM
Crowne Plaza Hotel | 1441 NE 2nd Ave
"Bridging Communities" is an evening of fundraising and celebrating Oregon's Asian and Pacific Islander community members! Join us for a cocktail hour, dinner, live auction, and performances from our community members.
Click the button to buy your tickets!
March 14, 2017
IRCO client Rukia Abdi was featured on KATU sharing her story about fleeing violence in Somalia--and hoping to continue to live in safety in the United States. Djimet Dogo discusses anxiety in the immigrant and refugee community following Trump's executive orders. Click below to watch her powerful story.
January 26, 2017
We know that the actions taken by President Trump create fear and uncertainty, but we assure you that IRCO’s core mission and values remain the same. Our doors will stay open to provide available services for all immigrants and refugees living in Oregon. We encourage everyone to get involved. Click below for ways to take action now!
December 16, 2016
"When Ngo came to Portland, she felt overwhelmed and alone. Then, her son was born. The country was new. Being a mom was new. She was starting from scratch. Myle Cao from IRCO was the missing link to her new 'family.'”
IRCO's Parent-Child Development Services were highlighted in Early Learning Multnomah's newsletter! Click below to read the whole story.
November 21, 2016
IRCO’s mission is unchanged. We will continue to welcome newcomers, protect their rights, and help them achieve safety, equality, justice and self-sufficiency in their transition to a dignified life. Here are some actions we can all take now to care for our communities.
November 17, 2016
KATU visited IRCO to learn about Berhane, an IRCO client who came to Portland from Eritrea and now has a job he loves at Rejuvenation. Watch Berhane's story and see how IRCO helped him and others build new beginnings in Portland.
November 14, 2016
Congratulations to IRCO Africa House Manager Djimet Dogo, who was presented with the Muslim Educational Trust's Leadership Award on November 12! Djimet received the award for his dedication and leadership to our Muslim community--the recognition is very well deserved.
October 18, 2016
October marks IRCO Africa House's 10th anniversary! Ten years ago, we opened our doors with only 4 employees. Today our multicultural team represents 17 ethnicities and speaks 10 languages.
October 13, 2016
We are proud to announce that IRCO and our partners at Catholic Charities were the recipients of the Oregon Change Maker Award from the Consortium of Asian American Theaters & Artists (CAATA) and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival (OSF)! We were recognized for our community impact on October 5th at CAATA's 5th National Asian American Theater Conference and Festival hosted by OSF in Ashland, OR.
July 20, 2016
Check out all the things that are happening around IRCO!
July 18, 2016
Through IRCO’s SummerWorks program, Leonel Guarardo, Jr. (Leo) is working at Washington County Fairgrounds this summer on the grounds crew. “I dropped out of high school my junior year,” says Leo, who is now 18, attending alternative school in Hillsboro and working on his GED. “I actually care now, and I’m trying to get something done.”
July 7, 2016
Leisl Wehmueller, IRCO program coordinator for vocational case management, was featured in the Daily Journal of Commerce, talking about the challenge that refugee professionals face returning to their field in Oregon. As she says in the story: “There is no program to re-credential them from their home country. I’ve met a lot of engineers and thought there has to be something out there that is working and we are looking for ways to get connected to a solution.” Find out what she and IRCO are doing to help resolve this problem!
June 28, 2016
Come celebrate the cultures, stories and histories of our city's diverse refugee communities!
WHAT: Portland Refugee Celebration Day
WHEN: Friday, July 8, 2016 // 2:00-5:00 p.m.
WHERE: East Portland Community Center // 740 SE 106th Ave.
April 29, 2016
April 25, 2016
With an increase in our Multnomah County SUN Services funding, we’re excited to expand IRCO’s culturally specific services to Portland’s Slavic community—and more than double our SUN Community School capacity.
March 25, 2016
IRCO's Healthy Families Program helps new parents adjust to parenthood and life in the U.S. Read about one of IRCO's amazing parent educators, Sivheng Ung, and the story of one of her clients, Lal Nun Puii, a refugee from Burma.
Photo courtesy of MultCo Global
March 16, 2016
IRCO is pleased to announce Sophorn Cheang as the newly selected Asian Family Center Manager.
March 14, 2016View PDF
January 26, 2016
Abu Bakar and Abdul Sheikh, students in our RIM Program, were featured in the Portland Tribune. "It really helped all the way to my high school year, and still they are still helping me,” Abu Bakar says of his mentor and the program. RIM is in great need of more mentors! Read about all of IRCO's volunteer needs here: www.irco.org/support/volunteer.html
Photo courtesy of Portland Tribune
January 12, 2016
The Al Khlief family is from Homs, one of Syria’s most war-devastated cities, and now they are some of Portland’s newest residents. “I feel I am myself here," Abdulaziz says. "I have rights and responsibilities. Now my life has just started.”
January 11, 2016
IRCO turns 40 this year! Find out what we've been up to—and what's ahead!
January 11, 2016
"I am trying any job for experience ... I want to know how to survive while living in the United States." IRCO client Yin Aye Naw shares her story of navigating Portland's economy with Metro's Regional Snapshot Program. Photo credit Sally Painter/Metro
December 23, 2015
Check out The Oregonian's story about how families in Portland's Zomi community are celebrating Christmas this year! Photo courtesy of Oregon Live/The Oregonian.
December 21, 2015
Read The Skanner's story of Moima Doe, an IRCO client who received much needed home repairs through a partnership between Rebuilding Together Portland and Lowe's. Photo courtesy of The Skanner.
December 15, 2015
"I know how heartbreaking and terrifying it is to live without a home, but I am again facing this awful reality." Immigrants, low-income residents and housing advocates presented public testimony at IRCO about the strain of increasing gentrification in East Portland.
December 14, 2015
Watch KOIN 6's coverage of how gentrification is affecting low-income and immigrant families in East Portland. Photo courtesy of KOIN 6.
November 18, 2015
IRCO's Chabbi Koirala and Lee Po Cha explain how we help refugees succeed and build community in Portland.
November 16, 2015
As governors across the U.S. try to block resettlement of Syrian refugees in their state, Djimet Dogo talks to KOIN 6 about their arrival in Oregon.
April 15, 2015
Catch up on everything that's happening at IRCO this spring!
January 15, 2015
Happy 2015! Find out what's happening at IRCO in the new year!
January 7, 2015
African youth face deep challenges in attaining success in the USA today. This report documents the risks youth face for becoming gang-involved.View PDF
September 15, 2014
Read about all the exciting things happening at IRCO!
August 1, 2014Oregon Public Radio did a great piece on IRCO's SAFRN summer program that helps helps newly arrived refugee youth
July 1, 2014Read about IRCO's past and upcoming events, client highlights and program features here!
April 8, 2014Check out our Spring 2014 Newsletter and make sure to sign up for our email list to get the next one in your inbox!
March 15, 2014IRCO is so proud of our IRCO Africa House Manger and Community Leader, Djimet Dogo, for ALL he does for the community and winning the Skanner's “Newsmaker of the Year” award for his humanitarian efforts.
October 29, 2013The City Club of Portland (CCP) has invited IRCO staff Victoria Libov to attend the CCP event November Civic Drinks as a guest of honor representing IRCO and the role IRCO plays in workforce training and development within the community.
October 23, 2013Cover Oregon's outreach to refugee and immigrant communities has been a challenge. In Northeast Portland earlier this month, about 10 people met in the conference room at IRCO headquarters…
October 21, 2013Check out IRCO's Executive Director on Comcast's Newsmakers series speaking about IRCO and the refugee community in Portland.
September 10, 2013The thousands of African immigrants and refugees living in Multnomah County face “dismal” economic prospects and glaring inequities in access to health services, decent housing and educational opportunities...
June 20, 2013
World Refugee Day was established by the United Nations to honor the courage, strength and determination of women, men and children who are forced to flee their homes under threat of persecution, conflict and violence.View PDF
March 22, 2013In his 19 years, Madison High School senior Hussein Omari has endured more struggles than many people twice his age.
March 14, 2013
Last Thursday morning Aisha Mwinja passed away from cancer. Her death left six orphans, two girls and four boys aged from 9 years to 19.
February 15, 2013Madison High School's SUN School student group -- a group of new immigrants from Somalia and Ethiopia -- is hosting a special event next week that the group hopes to make an annual activity.