Root Causes Impacting Asylum
During this session, participants will learn about forced migration and who asylum seekers are. We will also discuss the challenges of the current asylum process and identify opportunities for advocacy and understand how faith communities can respond in effective ways at local and national levels.
Faith Communities Extending Welcome at the US/Mexico Border
During this session, you will learn about the role faith communities play in Mexico at the U.S. - Mexico border and how faith communities in the U.S. can extend partnership and support. Participants will also learn about the U.S. asylum process and Credible Fear Interviews. We will also discuss how to collectively collaborate to support asylum seekers on both sides of the southern border.
Extending Shelter and a Warm Welcome at the Southern Border
During this session, participants will hear from shelters along the U.S.-Mexico border and CWS staff on how they are extending welcome to asylum seekers, including unaccompanied children, once they are released from federal custody. We will also discuss services available to asylum seekers at the U.S.- Mexico border. In addition, we will explore ways to support local shelters and prepare to welcome families in your local communities, as well as ways to support unaccompanied children.
US Asylum Process and Current Challenges
During this session, participants will learn about the life-saving asylum program. We will discuss the eligibility criteria required for seeking asylum and current challenges of the asylum process in the United States. In addition, we will touch on recent policies impacting asylum seekers.
Walking Together in Faith: Congregational Models to Support Asylum Seekers
During this session, participants will learn about two models of offering congregational support for asylum seekers, from the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee's CAPAS program and from The Episcopal Church and their Neighbor to Neighbor program. Speakers will share inspiration and stories, as well as the challenging truths about the nature of this work. We will also discuss how some faith groups are responding to asylum seeker needs, ranging from general accompaniment to full sponsorship and support over many months.
Faith Communities Supporting Asylum Seekers in the Interior
During this session, participants will learn about case management programs serving asylum seekers in the interior that provide wraparound support and address physical, psychosocial, medical needs and more. Participants will also broaden their awareness of the stories of asylum seekers through multimedia.
Supporting Black Asylum Seekers
During this session, participants will hear from two Black asylum seekers as they share their own experience with the asylum process and the ways they are supporting others on their journey. Speakers will discuss the challenges and discrimination Black asylum seekers face during their asylum process.
Supporting LGBTQ+ Asylum Seekers
During this session, participants will learn about efforts in the United States to welcome and support LGBTQ+ asylum seekers. Specific examples of faith and community welcome of LGBTQ+ community members will be explored. We will also discuss how to provide affirming and safe spaces for newcomers.