Find Posts By Topic

Team OIRA Fall 2021 Newsletter: The Seattle Relief Fund is now open!

The Seattle Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs logo featuring the blue Chief Sealth masthead

Seattle Relief Fund applications now open!

Stylized graphics featuring a Coast Salish totem pole, the Space Needle, and Mt. Rainier with the text: "Seattle Relief Fund: One-time Seattle Relief Funds now available."

The City of Seattle is offering one-time financial assistance to eligible Seattle residents impacted by the pandemic

This program offers a one-time payment of $1,000 to individual applicants and up to $3,000 for household applicants. Applicants must be income-eligible and live within the Seattle city boundaries, with a few exceptions. We encourage all interested applicants to read the Seattle Relief Fund (SRF) eligibility requirements and Frequently Asked Questions closely.

The review process is NOT first-come, first-served. However, to support those with the most need, the fund prioritizes vulnerable Seattle residents who have disproportionately experienced the economic and public health impacts of the COVID-19 crisis, which include households that were unable to access state unemployment, had no health insurance, didn’t receive federal stimulus payments, or experienced housing instability or mental health crisis related to COVID-19. The City of Seattle encourages residents to apply as soon as possible. The application period is open for three weeks, from Monday, October 25, 2021 to November 15, 2021, 11:59 p.m.

You can access more information about the Seattle Relief Fund, including eligibility details and the application form in Amharic, Simplified and Traditional Chinese, Korean, Somali, Spanish, Tagalog/Filipino, and Vietnamese here. Funds are available to eligible applicants regardless of citizenship status/immigration status.

If you need assistance applying, organizations are available to help applicants over the phone in several languages. You can find their contact information here. Please help us share this information by utilizing these outreach materials here (located at the bottom of the post).

If you are eligible, get your COVID-19 booster shot!

Photo of Seattle skyline featuring Space Needle and Mount Rainier; City of Seattle COVID-19 Vaccination Hubs; Get your first, second, or booster dose!; City of Seattle is offering FREE COVID-19 vaccines for people who are not yet fully vaccinated or are eligible for a Pfizer booster shot. You can get your COVID-19 vaccine at one of three City hubs:

  • Downtown Seattle Hub (now open!)
  • South Seattle Hub (TBD)
  • West Seattle Hub (opens tomorrow)

The COVID-19 vaccine is free, and insurance and ID are not required for vaccination at a City site. Appointments are recommended to speed up the process, but walk-ins are also welcome. Find more info at

Introducing the newest member of Team OIRA!

A headshot of Luanda Arai, Community Outreach and Program SpecialistYou might have already seen that over the summer, we welcomed our new Community Engagement and Programs Specialist Luanda Hassan Arai. Luanda has actually experienced life as an immigrant twice, once in the United Kingdom and then again right here in Seattle. She has deep experience in immigrant justice work. As such, Luanda will be helping lead OIRA’s outreach and engagement, managing the next steps for the Immigrant Family Institute, and providing support for the Seattle Immigrant and Refugee Commission. Learn more about Luanda here.

Still vigilant & hopeful on federal immigration reform.

Picture of the Statue of Liberty during the day overlooking the harbor.While we may have a more pro-immigrant/refugee federal administration, it doesn’t mean that we stop holding Congress and the president accountable to comprehensive immigration reform and going further than just undoing the harmful orders and policies of the previous administration. We remain focused on updates to the public charge policy, increasing refugee admissions, and making citizenship more accessible to eligible immigrants. You can learn more about this work here.

Thank you for welcoming our new Afghan neighbors!

Members of Viets4Afghans appearing on PBS NewsHour Weekend. We at OIRA have been so inspired by the outpouring of support from Seattle residents for our new Afghan neighbors and friends. From the frequent news stories about local community organization Viets4Afghans to the grassroots aid efforts of Muslim Association of Puget Sound American Muslim Empowerment Network, Afghan Health Initiative, and CAIR-WA, thank you for helping ensure Seattle is truly a welcoming city! We also just wanted to make sure you saw this grant opportunity from our friends at King County: Afghan Resettlement Capacity Building Mini-Grants, one-time grants to community-based organizations to support efforts to assist Afghan guests in the resettlement process. Learn more here.

Cool picture of the Seattle skyline looking east.
The City of Seattle COVID-19 Resources page features the latest programs to help those impacted by the pandemic.

A graphic designed image with green and yellow striped background with orange semi-circle at the top and bottom of stripes. Bold black text reads: “Introducing the Food Equity Fund.” Smaller text at the bottom reads “Bring culturally relevant food and knowledge to your community.”
Applications now open for the Food Equity Fund, a new grant program to advance food equity in underserved communities.