Who We Are


Refugee & Immigrant Transitions (RIT), formerly Refugee Transitions, was founded in 1982 as the Refugee Women’s Program. RIT is a 501(c)3 nonprofit agency providing free education, family engagement, and community leadership program services to people who have sought refuge in the U.S. Our students have experienced forced migration due to war, violence, persecution, and/or economic duress.

In September 2019, we formally expanded our name to Refugee & Immigrant Transitions to be more inclusive of the diverse populations we serve.

Our Mission

Our mission is to welcome and partner with those who have sought refuge, employing strengths-based educational approaches and community supports so they may thrive in our shared communities.

Our Vision and Values

Our vision is to see all newcomers thrive and become full, participating members of our shared communities.

We believe in the power of education to unlock opportunity, and we provide solutions that are transformative for students and volunteers alike. We are honored to share in the journeys of our students and firmly believe that refugees, asylees, and immigrants have the resilience and leadership potential to shape our world for the better. 

Our Approach

Despite the adversity they have gone through, as well as the major challenges they face here in the U.S., our students inspire us daily with their courage and commitment. Our work is rooted in an asset-based approach, where we cultivate mutually beneficial cross-cultural relationships and create opportunities for newcomer leadership.

  • We operate out of the belief that Education is an unalienable human right. It is at the center of everything we do. We ensure that our students progress in English, and support them on their pathways to schooling, employment, and citizenship. Through our educational programs, we build cross-cultural bridges by engaging volunteers.

  • Our educational programs are supplemented by Family Engagement. We connect newcomer families to vital community resources and reduce social isolation.

  • We could not do our work without our Community Leaders. They make a substantial impact in our programs by providing multilingual assistance and acting as community liaisons.

Our Partnerships

We work closely with multiple partners around the Bay Area to ensure coordinated support and collective impact. Our collaborative partners include schools, school districts, resettlement agencies, and other community-based organizations. We are on the steering committee of the East Bay Refugee and Immigrant Forum, as well as members of the San Francisco Coalition of Asylee, Immigrant, and Refugee Services and the Refugee and Immigrant Forum of Santa Clara County.

Quick Facts & Links