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International Institute of Minnesota Welcomes Refugees

 International Institute of Minnesota
The International Institute of Minnesota is a unique program that helps new Americans start a new life in the U.S. The program welcomes refugees from countries such as Bhutan, Burma, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Iran, Iraq, Liberia, Russia, and Somalia, many of whom escaped war and persecution.

The program has helped people like Shegitu Kebede who fled wars in Ethiopia and after several years became co-owner and manager of a restaurant in St. Paul. She also raised more than $20,000 in funds from customers, friends and a fundraising dinner she organized that was held at the International Institute. She will use the money to return to Ethiopia where she will open a school to help refugees learn job skills and the English language.

The services from the International Institute helped her get her start in America. The organization provides help in the form of finding housing, enrolling children in school, providing employment counseling for adults, and applying for public benefits. Last year, the organization helped 383 refugees find a new life in America.

The organization, headquartered in St. Paul, Minnesota, helps refugees find a new life and become self-sufficient citizens of the U.S. Language and citizenship classes along with an accelerated employment program help refugees become independent within four months of their arrival.

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