The Uniting for Ukraine Support Line: Virtual Support for Ukrainian Humanitarian Parolees

The IRC recently launched the Virtual Resettlement Line (VRL), combining the success of both the virtual APA (VAPA) program and the Uniting for Ukraine Support Line (U4USL). VRL launched on April 3, 2023, and is a one-stop resource for any prospective clients who are not yet connected to a resettlement agency or who are struggling to access benefits or resources in their community. VRL is staffed by English-, Ukrainian-, Russian-, Dari-, and Pashto-speaking virtual navigators. VRL is open 9am – 5pm ET Monday – Friday and can be reached by calling +1 (212) 551 – 3010 or emailing VRL@rescue.orgmailto:VRL@rescue.org. Please share widely with service providers and clients who may benefit from accessing this line! Note: the Virtual Resettlement Line replaces VAPA and U4USL, which are now closed.

On April 21, 2022, President Biden announced the launch of a new program: Uniting for Ukraine (U4U). The program “provides a pathway for Ukrainian citizens and their immediate family members who are outside the United States to come to the United States and stay temporarily in a two-year period of parole.” By matching Ukrainian applicants overseas with U.S.-based supporters who agree to provide them with financial support, over 65,000 Ukrainians have entered as humanitarian parolees since the launch of U4U.   

With any new program comes a myriad of questions. With the arrival of a vulnerable population like Ukrainian humanitarian parolees (UHPs), and with financial supporters who may be new to the challenges of resettlement, there is an even greater need for resources, referrals, and support in a timely manner. That’s where the Uniting for Ukraine Support Line comes in! 

What is the Uniting for Ukraine Support Line?

In collaboration with Loyal Source, the International Rescue Committee (IRC) launched the Uniting for Ukraine Support Line (U4USL) less than two months after the launch of the federal U4U program. Since launching on June 13, 2022, U4USL has received over 500 calls from more than 400 unique callers. Questions have ranged from how to find a tuberculosis testing center to meet parole requirements to how to apply for an employment authorization card.  

As Ukrainian humanitarian parolees continue to come through the U4U program, initiatives like U4USL will continue to provide referrals to vital resources and services for these newcomers and their supporters. These resources include federally funded mainstream benefits such as health insurance through Medicaid and food assistance through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).  Additional programs UHPs may be eligible for include Refugee Cash Assistance (RCA), the Matching Grant (MG) program, Refugee Medical Assistance (RMA), and more specialized programs like intensive case management through the Preferred Communities program.   

Ukrainian humanitarian parolees may also be eligible for access to Refugee Support Services (RSS), which includes employability services, job training and preparation, assistance with job searching, English language training, and case management. 

How do you access U4USL, and who can call?

Any Ukrainian humanitarian parolee is welcome to call U4USL between 9 AM and 5 PM (ET) Monday through Friday to speak with a virtual navigator at (407) 591-3963. U4USL can also be reached via email at U4USL@Loyalsource.com. Virtual navigators speak Ukrainian, Russian, and English and are available to answer questions, share resources, and refer eligible clients to the IRC for enrollment into applicable programs.   

Want to know more about U4USL?

Service providers can email the U4USL team at VRL@rescue.org if you have any questions or feedback. (This email address is not intended for clients.) 

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