Community Resources

Refugee & Immigrant Transitions has compiled various resources related to helping newcomers in our shared communities. More resources are available to RIT volunteers. If you are interested in becoming an RIT volunteer, please check for all details. 

Newcomer Assistance

Refugee & Immigrant Transitions often receives requests for assistance outside of our current service areas. We have compiled some local resources which may be useful to newcomers and those assisting them.

Resources in San Francisco and Alameda County

Resources in All Bay Area Counties

Cross-Cultural Education

Refugee Backgrounders

This page provides useful and detailed information about refugees from different countries and cultures. The publications include a population's history, culture, religion, language, education, and resettlement needs, as well as brief demographic information. 

Bridging Refugee Youth & Children's Services

A collection of resources relating to the needs of refugee children. 

Recommended Books

We highly recommend these books for a deeper understanding of the forced migration experience.

“The Girl Who Smiled Beads: A Story of War and What Comes After” by Clemantine Wamariya

“The Far Away Brothers: Two Young Migrants and the Making of an American Life” by Lauren Markham

“Dear America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen” by Jose Antonio Vargas

“The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down: A Hmong Child, Her American Doctors, and the Collision of Two Cultures” by Anne Fadiman

“What Is The What: The Autobiography of Valentino Achak Deng” (novel), by Dave Eggers

“First They Killed My Father: A Daughter of Cambodia Remembers” by Loung Ung

ESL/ Teaching Links

The Spring Institute

The Spring Institute provides many useful teaching materials for working with literacy level students and resources for working with students who have experienced trauma.


The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (formerly the INS) website has information about taking the citizenship exam, test questions, and online application and change of address forms.

ERIC--Trauma and Adult Learning

This resource discusses individual responses to trauma, its effects on learning, and ways in which educators can respond. Published by Educational Resources Information Center.

Adolescent Literacy

This article on the website discusses how to motivate reluctant adolescent readers. Common Core

For practicing math and language arts using Common Core standards.