Welcoming Afghans: APA Community Partners

Photo: Joshua Roberts/Getty Images

What is the Afghan Placement and Assistance Program?

The Afghan Placement and Assistance (APA) Program was put into motion in late August by the State Department and launched on September 1st. Most Afghan nationals will be paroled into the United States through the APA program. This program will offer temporary legal status in the United States and expedited work authorization. Individuals will be resettled with existing refugee resettlement agencies and connected to various means of support for a 30 to 90-day service period. During this program period, resettlement agencies will provide basic core services that are similar to core services under the United States Refugee Admissions Program. This includes, but is not limited to, airport reception, accessing safe and appropriate housing, providing adequate food supplies, accessing seasonal clothing, accessing health care and other public benefits, as eligible, assistance with school enrollment for minors, cultural orientation and limited financial assistance. The APA program is expected to serve over 50,000 Afghan parolees across the United States.

What do Afghans receive from the APA Program

Afghan parolees will receive initial relocation and support services during the APA program service period to support their resettlement into their new communities. Services provided through the APA program include:

  • Reception services
  • Decent, safe and sanitary housing
  • Household items and furniture
  • Culturally appropriate, ready-to-eat meal upon arrival
  • Adequate food supplies
  • Seasonally appropriate clothing
  • Home visits
  • School enrollment
  • Selective Service registration, as applicable
  • Transportation support
  • Cultural Orientation
  • Assistance enrolling in English Language Training
  • Assistance enrolling in employment services, as appropriate and eligible
  • Assistance accessing health services, as possible
  • Assistance enrolling in public benefits, as eligible
  • Limited financial assistance

Sponsor nationally with CWS HQ

Join us in welcoming Afghan newcomers to your community by becoming an APA Community Partner.

APA Community Partners are formal organized groups (e.g. congregations, businesses, university communities, faith groups, sports teams, local clubs, etc.) located outside the 100 mile radius of a CWS office who are interested in becoming an APA Community Partner.

Here is an overview of the steps to become an APA Community Partner:

Complete the CWS Readiness Assessment Form

Complete CWS APA Community Partner Training

Complete CWS background check process

Build your basic service plan of welcome

Be matched with an arriving family

Welcome the family to your community

APA Community Partner requirements:

  • Must have secured a safe, sanitary, affordable apartment or house
  • Must have identified a Dari or Pashto interpreter
  • Collect good quality furnishings and household supplies to preserve limited available funding to pay for housing costs
  • Recommended but not required that each co-sponsor group raise $2,000 or 3 months of rent to support the long-term stability of housing for the family
  • 10-40 hours per week of support during first weeks
  • Weekly coaching sessions with a CWS Community Sponsorship Associate
  • Group members must pass background checks as determined by CWS background check standards
  • Group must complete CWS’ APA Community Partner Training
  • All members of the group must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 or receive a medical or religious exemption as per CWS’ COVID Vaccination Policy
  • Group must agree to core CWS policies including Code of Conduct, Anti-Human Trafficking Policy, Child Safeguarding Policy, Policy on Gender Equality, Racial Equity Platform, Accountability to Affected Populations Framework

Recommended training while you wait to be matched as an APA Community Partner

Formal training and guidance will be provided to all APA Community Partners. For those interested and looking to learn more about community sponsorship and working with Afghans, the following recorded webinars are available to begin your education.


You can also download the APA Community Partner Manual. Simply provide your name and email address, and we'll send you the link to access the manual.

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