Category Archives: Refugee Support Network



On May 5th, the Refugee Support Network welcomed VISTA Leader Amanda Addington. After receiving her B.A. in Global and International Studies from State University of New York at Oswego, Amanda served with New York Campus Compact and Binghamton University as an AmeriCorps VISTA program coordinator for the Bridging the Digital Divide program. Most recently, she worked as a Donor Development fundraiser at Greenpeace New Zealand. Amanda will spend the year providing support and training to the current RSN VISTAs, and also work to build the capacity of the project


Where are they now?

Here’s news on a few former RSN VISTAs and what they’re up to now.

Marie Hoffmann, Refugee Support Network VISTA Leader, 2009-2010

Currently, I oversee the outreach efforts of a network of organizations, the Washington Anti-Trafficking Response Network. My work now is, in some ways, very similar to my work with the RSN – providing technical assistance and support to partner agencies and reporting for the project as a whole. Beyond that experience, my current position allows me to provide outreach, education, and training on human trafficking locally and victim services to community based organizations and vulnerable populations and to develop relationships and coalitions to better serve survivors.

Leann Price, International Rescue Committee (IRC) VISTA, 2010-2011

I transitioned out of my VISTA position into a position at my sponsoring agency (IRC) to help newly arrived refugees find employment.  I am also in the TESOL graduate program at Seattle University (SU).  I believe my VISTA position played a key role in my obtaining a permanent position at the IRC as well as my acceptance at SU. 

Annie Keating, International Rescue Committee (IRC) VISTA, 2004-2005

After my VISTA term ended, I worked for Hopelink for a year doing food stamp outreach and then went back to school (UW School of Social Work) for my MSW…and then came right back to the IRC to work as an Employment Specialist a few weeks after I graduated!


Newsletter Updates

CRB FAFSA MLK Service ProjectCheck out the latest update on Refugee Support Network accomplishments over the past three months!  RSN Newsletter March 2013


Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service

Coalition for Refugees from Burma’s FAFSA Filing Workshop

The Refugee Support Network celebrated Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service with a trip to the Refugee Transition Center in Kent to assist Burmese high school students as they worked to complete their FAFSA applications and begin the process of applying to college.

Each VISTA partnered with a Burmese high school senior and worked through the FAFSA application, taking some time to discuss the student’s plans for college and the future. One student even expressed an interest in going into politics and running for Congress!

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Newsletter Updates

Service Project5 9-20-12Check out the latest update on Refugee Support Network accomplishments over the past three months!  RSN November/December Newsletter


9/11 Day of Service

In honor of the 9/11 National Day of Service and Remembrance, the Refugee Support Network partnered with the Nature Consortium of West Seattle to help remove 1,500 square feet of invasive blackberry plants in the West Duwamish Greenbelt.

Here are some pictures of us hard at work!

Thanks to the Nature Consortium for such a great experience!

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Who is an AmeriCorps VISTA?

As members of the Refugee Support Network, each of us serves a year-long term (at minimum) as an AmeriCorps VISTA.

AmeriCorps is a network of local, state, and national service programs that connects more than 70,000 Americans each year with service positions to meet our country’s critical needs in education, public safety, health, and the environment. AmeriCorps members serve with nonprofits, public agencies, and faith-based and community organizations, and since 1994, more than 400,000 men and women have provided needed assistance to millions of Americans across the nation through their AmeriCorps service. VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) is a division of AmeriCorps where members leverage human, financial, and material resources to increase the capacity of low-income communities across the country to solve their own problems.

For more information about the AmeriCorps program visit .



Yvette Sumner

AmeriCorps VISTA Leader

Refugee Support Network

Yvette serves as VISTA Leader for the Refugee Support Network, providing support and training for Refugee Support Network VISTA members and building the capacity of the project. She was born and raised in Raleigh, North Carolina and danced professionally for three years at Raleigh’s Carolina Ballet before earning a B.A. in English at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She also has a master’s degree in Nineteenth-Century Literature from The University of York in the United Kingdom. Yvette spent the past year as an AmeriCorps VISTA at the Feeding America Southwest Virginia Food Bank in Abingdon, VA, serving as the Abingdon branch’s product coordinator and volunteer recruiter.

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Refugee Support Network

Seven agencies, One common goal: Create better lives for refugees and immigrants in King County

Who are we?

We are the members of the Refugee Support Network, a group of AmeriCorps VISTA members who have committed to dedicate a year (or more) to improving service to underserved refugee and immigrant populations in Seattle and King County, Washington. We work as a team, yet serve at one of seven refugee and immigrant social service agencies in King County in an independent capacity.

What do we do?

We use our talents and experience to build the capacity of the organizations where we work. We make connections, coordinate programs, recruit volunteers, raise money, and conduct research in order to help resettle refugees arriving in King County from across the world.

Where do we work?

Why do we do this work?

Our Goal: Create better lives for refugees and immigrants in King County.
We’d like to share our experiences with you as we work toward this goal.

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