What is a Good Neighbor Team?
A Good Neighbor Team (GNT) is a group of people from a local church, (consisting of 5-12 people for a 6 month commitment) that partners with World Relief Texas to welcome, walk alongside, and offer reciprocal friendships with a newly arrived refugee family. After onboarding and training with World Relief, GNTs are equipped to take over key responsibilities like conducting airport pick-ups, providing a warm welcome, cultural orientation, arranging housing, supporting access to medical and social services, and empowering newcomers towards employment. In short, the goal of GNT's is to assist with practical resettlement tasks aimed at empowering the family to move towards self-sufficiency, while simultaneously building meaningful, long-lasting relationships.
"Welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you"
Info Session: World Relief presents GNT Info Session to interested participants from local church partner.
Recruiting: Local church partner recruits and forms a group of 5-12 members.
Onboarding and Training:
- Submitting individual Volunteer Application*
- Completing US Programs E-Learning Course*
- Attending GNT Training
- Completing and receiving clearance on Background Check and Motor Vehicle Record
- Creating a Track it Forward account to log volunteer hours and accepting Microsoft Teams invite
*Must be completed before training
Placement: GNT is matched with a refugee family or group of individuals. GNT Coordinator will meet with Team Leads to discuss the match and to sign the GNT Agreement before the family arrives.
6 Months of Resettlement: GNT will walk alongside the refugee family for a commitment of 6 months. During this time, the GNT will help to provide some core resettlement services as well as invest relationally in the refugee family with the goal of helping them integrate and thrive in their new community.
"He defends the cause of the fatherless and the widow, and loves the foreigner residing among you, giving them food and clothing."
Current U.S. Climate
Currently, resettlement in the U.S. is experiencing a period of high arrivals, with the expectation of higher refugee arrivals from across the globe this year. With limited and stretched staffing across the country, the United States is focusing on recruiting and training Good Neighbor Teams to assist with the majority of core service provision to newcomers. We believe GNTs will allow for better community integration and simultaneously increase the capacity of resettlement offices.
Working with the local community is not only a good strategy, it's at the very heart of our work. We believe that God gave us a plan to address the brokenness in our world, and that it begins with being a good neighbor to people in vulnerable situations. We want to see local churches, businesses, and other groups creating and leading change in their communities.
A Volunteer Opportunity Unlike Any Other to Build Just and Welcoming Communities
Let us create change that lasts.
Looking for other ways to serve as a group?
Our primary one-time group opportunities are available for local church and community groups and are centered around education and awareness of the refugee population in our community. In this time, groups are able to engage in a refugee empathy simulation and prayer walk if interested.
Due to the nature of the vulnerable population we serve, our other engagement opportunities are often centered around long-term investment and building relationships versus a one-time service day. However, if there is a tangible, felt need that can be addressed through an event provided by a local church or community partner, we are willing to discuss what a one-day service opportunity could look like.
If you're interested in World Relief providing an educational group opportunity as listed above, or if you would like to discuss other potential ways for your group to be involved, please complete the form below. Due to the amount of inquiries we receive, we ask that you please request at least 2 months in advance.
We look forward to partnering with you in creating communities of welcome!