Refugee and Immigration Services

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Get Involved


Although RIS is part of Catholic Charities of Central and Northern Missouri, we strive to assist all who seek our help, regardless of faith. All volunteers are expected to respect the cultural and religious differences of our refugees. Because many refugees flee their countries due to safety reasons, it is of the utmost importance that our volunteers uphold and respect our refugees’ confidentiality.

Below are some of the many ways you can work with Refugee Services at our Columbia office.

Current Volunteers Needed – Fall 2015

Media & Community Outreach Intern

Exercise your skills as a professional communicator in a non-profit public relations role. As the Media Intern you’ll be responsible for managing the agencies Facebook, Instagram, and Webpage. You’ll find and create content to share on our news page, and identify and establish valuable community connection to increase our agencies profile within the community. Fall Interns will also work to enroll cases in the VAC Holiday Program. This program brings joy to several refugee children each holiday season. Inquire today to be considered for the internship beginning mid-August/early September.

Office Volunteer

We are always looking for individuals that love working with people to manage our front desk. This Fall we need help Monday and Wednesday mornings, and Tuesday and Thursday afternoons. An office volunteer greets clients as they come to the office, and acts as a liaison between our office and the rest of the community. Responsibilities include answering the phone, taking messages, and making appointments.

ELL Tutoring

Meet with refugees at home, in our office, or out in the community to help them conquer one step integral to self sufficiency…learning English. Our office host ELL classes for new arrivals and refugees with barriers attending formal classes Monday – Wednesday from 10am-12pm and 4pm-6pm. Contact our Volunteer Coordinator today if you want to serve in one of these classes or in a refugee home.

Donation Pick Up

For newly arriving refugees a home is a place of comfort and solace. One of the only things they can call their own after the long resettlement journey. We could not provide the support and initial housing we do without countless donation provided by our local community. We are need of a volunteer or a group of volunteers willing to coordinate pick ups from donors. At least one of these individuals should be comfortable and competent operating a box truck.

Ongoing Opportunities

Case Management Assistant

Looking for a way to be an active player in a refugees resettlement journey? Look no further, become a Case Management Assistant for one of our four case managers and help them as they ensure service delivery and assistance to new cases and they settle into Mid-Mo. CMA’s perform needs assessments, help clients enroll in relevant services, and teach valuable skills integral to resettlement. We are currently seeking CMA’s who can serve Monday – Friday anytime.

Organizing Donations

As our office provides initial housing for all refugees who resettle here in Columbia, we are always accepting furniture and household goods to help furnish their first homes in the U.S. Help us manage our donation system by volunteering with our office.

Translation (On – Call)

Are you bilingual, or even multilingual? Donate your translation skills to our office. We are looking for individuals with any language skills but actively recruiting for individuals fluent in:

*Some translation services are eligible for financial compensation.

Apartment Set Up (On – Call)

We are resettling refugees on an ongoing basis and are always looking for volunteers to help set up “Home Sweet Home” for new arrivals. This opportunity is primarily manual labor including lifting heavy furniture and other household items. Many volunteers have found it incredibly rewarding to assist in establishing a first home for our newest clients.


Interested in volunteering but none of opportunities above really strike a chord? Or do you have a special skill you would like to contribute? Please express your interest and we’ll find an opportunity for you to get involved.

Contact Us

Interested in any of the opportunities above or want to learn more about getting involved? Contact our Volunteer Coordinator Katie Freehling at .