International Rescue Committee-Seattle 


Since 1976 the IRC in Seattle has helped refugees rebuild their lives in Western Washington. Through case management, housing, health & wellness assistance, employment services, mentoring, educational programming, youth services and immigration support, refugees gain the skills and assistance needed to become independent community members.The IRC is the lead agency in the Washington Anti-Trafficking Response Network which provides comprehensive services for victims of human trafficking in Washington State. The IRC also participates in the Refugee Support Network, an AmeriCorps VISTA project expanding capacity in seven organizations serving refugees in King County.

Mission Statement
The International Rescue Committee (IRC) helps families uprooted by crisis survive and rebuild their lives. In Seattle, the IRC provides the services and support needed to assist refugees, asylees and victims of human trafficking to rebuild their lives and become independent and involved members of the community.

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International Rescue Committee-Seattle
100 S King St Ste 570 
(206) 623-2105 

Robert Johnson 
Executive Director 


International Rescue Committee-Seattle Programs

Over the years, the IRC has built numerous programs to support refugees and victims of human trafficking who are in the process of rebuilding their lives. Here are just a few examples of such programs:

The Health & Wellness Program provides intensive case management for refugees with special medical needs. The program ensures refugees are connected with appropriate services, gain the skills needed to manage their healthcare needs and provides advocacy for individuals navigating a complex healthcare system. The program offers health and wellness workshops, a women’s support group and an empowerment program for adolescent refugee girls. 

The Washington Anti-Trafficking Response Network (WARN) assists victims of human trafficking throughout Washington State.  As the lead agency in WARN, the IRC in Seattle coordinates with partner agencies, law enforcement, legal, social service and medical providers to ensure that victims of trafficking receive the services and support they need.  IRC staff conduct outreach and education to thousands of community members each year to raise awareness of human trafficking in the Pacific Northwest.

The Newcomer School Readiness Program provides academic orientation for newly arrived refugee youth and their parents who will be entering the Tukwila School District.  With our community partners, the IRC provides eight weeks of intensive school orientation for refugee youth who will be entering the U.S. school system for the first time.

Recent Successes and Current Challenges

In 2013, the IRC-led Washington Anti-Trafficking Response Network (WARN) made tremendous progress in their efforts to combat human trafficking in Washington State.   
  • WARN program partners identified and served a record number of survivors of human trafficking in 2013.   
  • The IRC in Seattle was awarded Enhanced Collaborative Model to Combat Human Trafficking grant from the Department of Justice along with Seattle Police Department to continue serving victims and survivors of human trafficking into 2015. 
  • WARN participated in El Centro de La Raza’s Day of the Dead Celebration, providing information on victims’ rights and services  to over 1300 members of Seattle’s Latino community.   
  • WARN provided training and outreach to over 5,000 service providers and other professions and community members. 
In 2011, the IRC began to provide extended case management to medically needy refugees.  The initial goals focused on the extension of individual case management. In the first year 96 clients were served.  As the program has evolved, additional needs have emerged.  In order to address critical issues, the IRC began to offer health and wellness workshops, expanded resources through new community partnerships, and coordinated ongoing support groups, including a knitting circle for elderly and disabled women and an adolescent empowerment group for refugee girls. 

There are many growth opportunities within the health and wellness program.  Expanded opportunities for health-focused workshops, extended support services through health liaisons from refugee communities and assistance for those needing to adjust to the changes that will come with the Affordable Care Act. Additional funding will help significantly improve health outcomes in refugee communities.


The International Rescue Committee (IRC) Seattle is one of the 22 domestic program offices within the national IRC network. Since 1976, IRC Seattle has resettled more than 19,000 refugees and assisted many more through its immigration, employment and education programs locally.

Use of Best Practices
IRC Seattle offers a mentoring program that pairs volunteers and established refugees with newly arrived refugees who need additional support.

Many of its case managers came to the United States as refugees themselves which gives them a unique perspective in supporting their clients.

Proven Success
In 2010, IRC provided employment services for 198 refugees, of whom 65 percent were employed by their eighth month in the United States in spite of the downturn in the economy and fewer employment opportunities.

During the summer of 2010, 76 youth participated in the IRC’s Newcomer School Readiness Program which helps refugee youth gain the skills needed to succeed in the U.S. school system – 99 percent of the youth showed a significant increase in mastery of the soft skills needed to succeed in school.

Collaboration and Leadership
IRC Seattle coordinates with other local organizations to provide culturally relevant services – partners include the Tukwila School District, local government offices, AmeriCorps VISTA, Asian and Pacific Islander Women and Family Safety Center, Refugee Women’s Alliance and many others.

IRC Seattle is a lead agency in the Refugee Support Network (RSN) – an AmeriCorps Vista program which places members in community-based organizations serving refugees. Also lead agency in the Washington Anti-Trafficking Response Network, providing a comprehensive, statewide network of services for victims of human trafficking.

Grant History with The Seattle Foundation:

Grants Awarded through The Seattle Foundation Grantmaking Program:

3/10/2011 $15,000.00support general operating expenses of IRC in Seattle.
6/10/2009 $20,000.00support general operating expenses.


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