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Refugee Mental Health and Wellness Initiative receives grant

The UNC Global Transmigration – Refugee Mental Health and Wellness Initiative (“Refugee Wellness”), a project of the UNC School of Social Work, has received a grant from the Triangle Community Foundation (TCF) Capacity Building Partnership.

“The grant will fund an assessment of our partnership with the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants (USCRI), and – we hope – will result in our eligibility for a larger capacity building grant later this year,” said Josh Hinson, a social work clinical instructor who leads the Initiative.

Refugee Wellness is a research project to assess the mental health needs of refugees in Wake, Durham, and Orange Counties while testing the feasibility, acceptability, and effectiveness of mental health interventions with this population.

It also serves as a field education unit for UNC School of Social Work MSW students. The students conduct mental health screenings with newly arrived refugees, and provide mental health treatment based on a three-tiered response to the screening:

  • Community Adjustment Support Groups
  • Individual and/or family therapy and case management
  • Intensive psychiatric case management for those with severe needs

Refugee Wellness has been working with USCRI since August 2013, when they began contracting with USCRI for interpretation services. A year later, Refugee Wellness collocated in USCRI’s Raleigh offices in order to reach more refugees and reduce travel costs.

The TCF grant was for $2,500 for Phase I, Organizational Assessment.

“Our students will be conducting the organizational assessment, using the skills they learn in their community and organizational practice classes,” said Hinson.

After they submit the organizational assessment by May 31, Refugee Wellness can apply for TCF’s larger $10,000 capacity building grant.

Also see:

School to contract with state to offer mental health services to new refugees

UNC study: Resettled refugees eager to receive mental health services

UNC Global Transmigration Refugee Wellness Initiative website