Have you ever wondered… what a Case Manager at World Relief does? If you have, then you are in luck because World Relief Spokane is excited to share that Case Manager, Coleen Hogan, was recently highlighted on an encouraging and inspiring lifestyle website called, She’s Charming. She’s Charming is a space for women of the 21st century who believe in the power and strength within them and want to express that in all areas of their lives.
A Case Manager for World Relief, in the Refugee Resettlement Department, Coleen said, “I help refugees fleeing from conflict or persecution in their home countries to resettle in Spokane and begin a new life in the United States. World Relief is contracted by the U.S. government to provide required services to each refugee client within the first 90 days of arrival, and I work with a partner to make sure all those services are implemented for our current refugee cases. We pick up the refugees from the airport, find them housing, supply basic furniture and household items, help them to apply for Social Security numbers and welfare benefits, provide orientation presentations, enroll them in ESL classes or schools, teach them basic life skills, and assist in setting up medical screenings. I have approximately 30 current cases at any time and my clients come from all over the world. Right now we have refugees from Burma, Pakistan, Iraq, Somalia, Sudan, Republic of Congo, Moldova, Cuba, and Guinea.”
When asked ‘What is the most unique aspect of your job,’ Coleen said: “Walking through the office one can hear almost any language imaginable (and some that I didn’t even know existed, like Tigrinya), and this is beneficial for our clients because there is almost always someone to interpret and explain cultural norms or differences in an understandable way. Our potlucks are also incredible, so many different types of food in one place and the world’s BEST homemade chai.”
When asked ‘What is your favorite part of your job,’ Coleen said: “There are so many things I enjoy about my job with World Relief. I love doing airport pick-ups, even late at night, being one of the first people to welcome a refugee to their new home is so exciting! It’s especially fun when a new arrival has family members here in Spokane. Sometimes refugee families have been separated for months or years, and I get to be there to see the pure joy and love as they reunite for the first time. I am also constantly challenged by my job which keeps me engaged — sometimes a little stressed — but never bored. Each day with each client is different and I am continually learning new things about cultures around the world and even more about the United States through an outside perspective.”
You can follow the adventures of Coleen and the rest of the World Relief Spokane staff on Instagram (WorldReliefSpokane) and Facebook. Get connected if you feel the call to serve the vulnerable with us. Our Case Managers work heavily with our volunteer base and are assisted by interns. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer or applying for an internship, please connect with our Volunteer Coordinator, Kim McKenna. Email Kim at email@example.com!