The Hello Neighbor Network, powered by Hello Neighbor, has increased its financial and resource-sharing support to U.S.-based nonprofits that serve refugee and immigrant populations. The Hello Neighbor Network works with grassroots and community-based nonprofits with operating budgets under $1,000,000, helping them via leadership development, peer support, education, and funding.
Today, the Hello Neighbor Network is proud to announce the addition of 23 new leaders to its 2023 Fellowship program. These leaders join the existing community of grassroots leaders, all of whom completed the Fellowship program in previous years.
“The Hello Neighbor Network continues to grow because of the incredible need across the United States to support and welcome refugees and immigrants into our communities. We see first-hand how grassroots nonprofit leaders can thrive when they have the funding, mentorship and support they need to succeed in their local communities and we are proud to have created this meaningful program and funding opportunities to support them. Together, we know we can create the change we need to have more welcoming and inclusive communities across the country.” - Sloane Davidson, Founder and CEO
Powered by Hello Neighbor, based in Pittsburgh, PA, the Hello Neighbor Network’s Fellowship program currently supports 63 grassroots nonprofits across 26 states serving the needs of their respective communities throughout the country. The program supports nonprofits during the early years which are known to be the most challenging time of their development, during which 30-50% of small businesses and nonprofits fail.
The Hello Neighbor Network Fellowship supports leaders in their environments, through peer support and interpersonal connections, education and know-how, and funding opportunities via the Resilience Grant program. By growing the Fellowship, Hello Neighbor expands community and connection between grassroots leaders throughout the U.S., all of whom make their communities more welcoming and inclusive to immigrants and refugees. The Fellowship will provide leaders with meaningful community and connection, and with relevant, built-in opportunities to strengthen their organizations.
“My participation in the Hello Neighbor Network in 2022 has given me a unique opportunity in many ways. Firstly, I gained a tremendous amount of knowledge in a short period of time on how good-hearted people nationwide strive to serve immigrant communities. I realized that there are focused services to be provided by a small group of volunteers and a broader range of services rendered by part-time and full-time employees of immigrant-serving NGOs. Secondly, on a personal level, I experienced a resurgence of the belief that there are more good people doing good than bad actors who cause pain and stress to vulnerable people, especially in immigrant communities. Thirdly, as one of their biggest fans, I highly recommend Hello Neighbor Network to anyone interested in raising their level of service efficiency and effectiveness.”– Robert Gonzalez (California Immigrants Resources Center), 2022 Network Fellow
The evacuation of Afghanistan last year and ongoing conflict in Ukraine has required an increased capacity to help resettle and offer post-resettlement support to refugee and immigrant families. There are currently 82.4 million forcibly displaced people around the world. Many refugees arrive at their destinations without the language and cultural knowledge to navigate a new place. There are hundreds of community members, community-based groups, and early-stage nonprofits who have the passion and approach to do the work of welcoming new neighbors to the U.S. and are eager to get started. In order to respond to these large humanitarian crises, these groups need an influx of capital to support their efforts, plus training, education, and support to be culturally competent and successful in their endeavors to help people rebuild their lives with dignity and respect.
The Hello Neighbor Network is able to grow with the support of local and national funders that include the Walmart Foundation and USA for UNHCR. In 2021, Hello Neighbor was featured in President George Bush’s book, Out of Many, One: Portraits of America's Immigrants. Over the past year, The Hello Neighbor Network has raised a total of $750,000.
In 2023, the Hello Neighbor Network will welcome the following 23 Hello Neighbor Network Fellows from 13 states across the U.S.:
- Ashley Marine, GirlForward (Chicago, IL)
- Brian Leone Tracy, Fox Valley Literacy (Appleton, WI)
- Catarina Lorenzo Antonio, Alliance of Mobilize Our Resistance (AMOR) (Providence, RI)
- Diana Higuera, Rocky Mountain Welcome Center (Aurora, CO)
- Diya Abdo, Every Campus a Refuge (Greensboro, NC)
- Erin Freeman, Project Hope 4 Kids (Salt Lake City, UT)
- Jeremy Ellison, Riverview International Center (Columbus, OH)
- Jill Segulin, Refugee Assistance Partners NJ (Scotch Plains, NJ)
- Julie Ramos Lagos, Bismarck Global Neighbors (Bismarck, ND)
- Krystsina Shchelkunova, Slavic Refugee and Immigrant Services Organization (La Jolla, CA)
- Laura Youngber, Middle Eastern Immigrant and Refugee Alliance (Chicago, IL)
- Luna Banuri, Utah Muslim Civic League (Salt Lake City, UT)
- Melissa Phillips, San Diego Refugee Tutoring (San Diego, CA)
- Michelle Lasnier, R Bazaar & Ruby's Market (Denver, CO)
- Naseema Gilson, Sanctuary Kitchen by CitySeed (New Haven, CT)
- Pam Font-Gable, Refugee Women Rising (Omaha, NE)
- Raghad Bushnaq, Mozaic (Adie, VA)
- Said Hassan, Community Services Agency Inc (Green Bay, WI)
- Sedique Popal, Noor Islamic and Cultural Community Center (Concord, CA)
- Sheila Badwan, Hanan Refugees Relief Group (Milwaukee, WI)
- Taneeza Islam, South Dakota Voices for Peace (Sioux Falls, SD)
- Vickee Moy, Starting Point for Refugee Children (Elk Grove, CA)
- Waheed Ahmad Haidari, Afghan Community Culture Center (El Cajon, CA)