New CWS Program Will Promote Safety, Well-Being of Unaccompanied Children Arriving in United States

October 8, 2021

Washington, D.C.—CWS today announced the launch of the new Home Study and Post Release Service Program to promote the safety and well-being of unaccompanied children arriving in the United States. The program will aid those children released from the care of the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) as they reunite with family members or sponsors. Through this initiative, children and the families they are joined with will receive case management services and connection to local resources to ensure their growth as they integrate into American communities.

“This program is vital, not only for the children that will have fuller lives because of it, but for our legacy as a country of hope. Being forced from all that you know, alone and afraid, can unsurprisingly have a devastating impact on a child’s well-being and development. Countering this trauma and helping these children regain a sense of security and hope is fundamental,” said Christine Lemonda, Director of Children Services at CWS. “This program will aid both the children and their sponsors as they look towards their futures in the United States, while also making our communities better for it.”

The humanitarian crisis in Central America has long deprived youth of their safety, dignity, and childhood. Age, gender, educational experience, and history of trauma and family separation are key factors contributing to the unique needs of unaccompanied children arriving in the United States. Many have mental health, medical, legal, immigration, education, and safety needs post release. 

CWS notes that the availability of community social services varies by location, so there is a need to support these children and their sponsors by connecting them to relevant community support. In response, this program will enable CWS and its network of affiliate partners across the country to provide services to children upon release from ORR custody with the ultimate goal of safety and well-being for unaccompanied children as they build new lives in the United States. 

For more information on the Home Study and Post Release Service Program, or to speak with Lemonda, contact