Working together to help refugees succeed.

The participation and support of local schools and organizations is vital to our ability to serve refugee students and their families.

Converging Paths Collaborative

We bring together education partners throughout the community to share experiences and expertise with the goal of improving the student experience for all refugees. For information about joining this initiative, please email or call Erin Van Maanen ( or 616.247.9611).

Converging Path Collaborators

  • Kentwood Public Schools Represented by Dr. Shirley Johnson
  • Grand Rapids Public Schools Represented by Dr. Mayda Gunnell and Kay Smith
  • Wyoming Public Schools Represented by Dr. Thomas Reeder
  • Kent Intermediate School District Represented by Casey Gordon
  • Kent Social Services Network Represented by Shay Kraley
  • Bethany Christian Services Represented by Hannah Werth
  • Lutheran Social Services Represented by Chris Cavanaugh
  • National Heritage Academies Represented by Srey Meyer

Converging Paths Conference

The generous support of the State of Michigan, local donors and community partners enables us to host an annual conference for educators and school-based employees working with refugee students.

Sign up to be notified of our next conference.

Access a world of knowledge.

Continually updated cultural backgrounders and links to external resource help guide educators and other community members assisting refugee families.

The Refugee Journey
Local Refugee Resettlement Timeline
How to Support Refugees


United Nations High Commissioner on Refugees (UNHCR) leads and coordinates international action to protect refugees and resolve refugee problems worldwide.

Bridging Refugee Youth and Children’s Services is a national technical assistance project working to broaden the scope of information and collaboration among service providers.

US Citizenship and Immigration Services is the government agency responsible for the administration of immigration and naturalization adjudication functions and establishing immigration services policies and priorities.

Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) provides people in need with critical resources to assist them in becoming integrated members of American society.

DHHS – Refugee Assistance Program is a federal program that helps refugees become self-sufficient after their arrival. Temporary RAP cash assistance and medical aid may be available.

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