Hanna’s Story

The nature of resettling in a new country can come with uncertainties and unique challenges for refugees. Finding secure and affordable housing is a task that can be difficult to navigate especially if you are unfamiliar with the language and culture of your host country. Hanna, her son, and mother-in-law recently moved to California from Ukraine and have experienced the hurdles of finding a suitable space they can call home and a community they can thrive in.

They were connected to Church World Service’s caseworkers who were able to find the family an Airbnb in Southern California near a community of local Ukrainians from their city. CWS was able to negotiate a 30-Day extension for them to stay in their Airbnb while caseworkers continue to support the family transition into more permanent housing.

They are a great family and have made so much progress since arriving in the US. CWS caseworkers were able to successfully enroll Hanna’s son into middle school. CWS worked closely with the school registrar who was so welcoming and supportive with the family during the school enrollment process. Hanna’s son has had a great start to school and is excited to receive his school-issued laptop. Thanks to a partnership with Operation School Bell, the school has also provided him with a $150 voucher allowing him to purchase items he likes at JC Penney. He is also eager to play sports in his new community. He was a tennis player and enjoyed roller skating in Ukraine, and he looks forward to playing these sports again.

CWS is supportive of Hanna becoming more independent and providing her family the community and connections needed to feel safe and at home in Southern California.