The main goal of the home setup is to not only get the necessary items into a house, but to create a welcoming atmosphere for a new arrival - to show from the outset that someone has been anticipating their arrival and put effort into welcoming them to their new home.  While these homes and apartments are simple, we want to put extra thought into how we set it up, setting up the home as if we were moving in ourselves.

Volunteers can prepare housing for refugees in the following ways:

  1. Gather donations: Volunteers can collect donations of furniture and various household items for the refugee's home. See the Materials Needs List for a list of the required items needed for the home. This list indicates the minimum requirements, but it is always the goal to provide more than the minimum. Used items are welcomed as long as they are in good shape. Mattresses and box springs, if not new, should be properly sanitized before being donated or come from a facility that sanitizes them (click here for a mattress sanitation guide). Toiletries should all be unused and all supplies unopened. Groups often utilize their greater church and community relationships as well as conducting donation drives to secure items for the home. WR Triad encourages volunteers to secure as many of the needed items as possible, however if there are items the group is unable to secure WR Triad can provide the needed items. Items not provided by the group will be collected from the WR Triad warehouse if available or, if items cannot be found there, will need to be purchased using the refugee's "Welcome Money", which is extremely limited. Volunteers must keep track of all of the items donated using the BNS form. When volunteers complete the BNS form, they should give it to the resource specialist or case manager. This list should be submitted at least 3 days before the refugee family arrives so that the resource coordinator can secure and deliver any items still needed to complete the BNS form.

  2. Setting up a refugee’s home: Refugee’s housing should be fully furnished and set up before the refugee's arrival. If a group has agreed to provide the necessary household items and do the home setup, they should coordinate with World Relief to work out timing, receive addresses, keys, etc. The team can then do any necessary cleaning, move in furniture, and decorate and prepare the home at a time that works for them. If a group does not provide the needed household items, their assistance with setting the home up is still extremely helpful. Volunteers should coordinate with World Relief to work out a time to do the home setup.  To understand what needs to be done during a home setup, please refer to the home setup checklist.

  3. Familiarize yourself with the refugee’s neighborhood: When partnering with a refugee, it is helpful for volunteers to make themselves familiar with the neighborhood and area where the refugees will be living. Identify local shopping, bus routes, parks, etc.  

  4. Prepare a fully stocked pantry and an arrival meal: Upon arrival, the refugee's pantry should be fully stocked and a culturally appropriate meal should be provided for them when they arrive in their new home. For more info and a list of culturally appropriate meals and grocery lists based on ethnicity, go to the food section of the toolkit. 

  5. Tax Deductions: Gift in Kind Receipts can be requested for items purchased for or donated to World Relief or our clients. These receipts may serve as proof of the donation for tax purposes. If a donor purchased an item, he or she should turn in the receipt to WR Triad in order to receive a deduction of the same value.

    This is a great time to learn more about the culture of the refugee you may be partnering with. is a website that provides in-depth cultural background information on ethnicities. You can also check out the Cultural Backgrounds page of this Toolkit for additional information, especially on cultures commonly served by WR Triad but not covered on the Cultural Orientation Resource Center.

World Relief Triad - 155 Northpoint Ave, Suite 102, High Point, NC 27262
T: 336.887.9007 - F: 336.887.5245 - E: - W: 
PDF icon Home Setup Checklist.pdf322.39 KB
PDF icon Basic Needs Form - WRHP.pdf295.06 KB