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Services to Older Refugees

The federal Services to Older Refugees Discretionary Grant, referred to in California as the Older Refugee Discretionary Grant (ORDG), provides funding to assist refugees who are 60 years of age or older. The state’s ORDG program:

  • Establishes and/or expands working relationships between refugee service providers and local Area Agencies on Aging to ensure that older refugees are linked to mainstream senior services; and
  • Assists older refugees with the naturalization process, particularly those individuals who have lost, or are at risk of losing, their Supplemental Security Income benefits due to their noncitizen immigration status.

For Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 2014, seven counties were allocated ORDG funding: Alameda, Los Angeles, Orange, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco, and Santa Clara.

The ORDG was awarded by the federal Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) to states through a competitive application process beginning FFY 2013. The current grant has a three-year project period running through FFY 2015, with states submitting an application for continuation funding each year. California was awarded $170,100, annually, which the state allocates to participating counties based on the number of older refugees in the counties receiving public assistance.

Below are links to more information on the ORDG program. If you have questions, please contact the Refugee Programs Bureau (RPB) at (916) 654-4356, or at RPB@dss.ca.gov .

NOTE: Some links below are to documents in Adobe Acrobat portable document format (pdf). Please see our Using this Site  page for details.