Cultural Orientation for Refugees


Cultural Orientation is the pre-departure and post-arrival education provided by Resettlement Support Centers and Resettlement Agencies to help you acquire the knowledge, skills, and attitudes you need to adapt to your life in the United States and become fully integrated into your new communities.

Reception and Placement Overview

  • Read - Reception and Placement Overview Fact Sheet
  • Listen - Reception and Placement Overview Podcast
  • Watch - Reception and Placement Overview Video

Digital Awareness for Refugees in the U.S.

  • Read - Digital Awareness for Refugees in the U.S. Fact Sheet
  • Listen - Digital Awareness for Refugees in the U.S. Podcast

You will receive Cultural Orientation twice:

Initial Cultural Orientation is provided by trained staff at the RSC before you depart for the United States. This Cultural Orientation will prepare you for resettlement by providing practical information on the culture and laws of the United States. It will assist you to develop realistic goals and know what to expect upon arrival. It will also prepare you for travel.

In the United States, staff, interns, and volunteers at Resettlement Agencies will welcome you by providing Cultural Orientation specific to the surrounding community. For that reason, some resettlement offices refer to Cultural Orientation as “community orientation.” This Cultural Orientation will provide practical information about how to get around, look for a job, and access local services such as healthcare and education.

Both the pre-departure and post-arrival Cultural Orientation are important and will help you thrive in your new environment. Cultural Orientation is provided with interpretation services and is offered to refugee newcomers in group classroom settings or, if necessary, on a one-on-one basis in certain locations.

Cultural Orientation is designed to help you become self-sufficient more quickly.

These topics are covered during Cultural Orientation classes:

  • Employment
  • Housing
  • Education
  • Resettlement Agency
  • Health
  • Community Services
  • Rights and Responsibilities
  • Learning English
  • Money Management
  • Transportation
  • Cultural Adjustment
⇠ Cultural Orientation Menu