A little more than 320 Afghans are expected to arrive at Refugee Services of Texas offices across the state in the next few weeks. This includes its Lake Highlands location.
Those seeking resettlement are Afghan nationals and their families, who assisted and cooperated with the U.S. military over the last few decades. They have applied for Special Immigration Visas, which allows for them to be resettled by RST and other similar agencies across the U.S. after being displaced by Taliban forces in Afghanistan over the last few weeks, RST shared in an Aug. 16 statement.
A portion of an estimated 30,000 total Afghans coming to the U.S. will be temporarily housed at Fort Bliss in El Paso.
“We know that this is just the beginning of this wave, and RST stands ready to do our part in this crisis,” CEO Russell Smith said in the statement.
Those entering the U.S. will undergo security background checks and health screenings. A member of the Lake Highlands office will also deploy to Fort Lee to help with newly arrived families.
“We stand ready, willing, and able to work with our national resettlement partners, elected representatives, and the military to process and resettle as many people as possible,” Smith said.
Volunteer training is now available virtually on RST’s website. Volunteers can help with setting up apartments, cultural orientation, the welcoming team and transportation services, among other tasks. Donation opportunities and other ways to support the organization can be found here.