Funded by the U.S. Office of Refugee Resettlement, and are administered in the state by the Office for Refugees and Immigrants. Refugee Employment Services assist employable refugees to obtain their first job as early as possible after arrival in the U.S. and, once employed, to upgrade their jobs to bring the refugee family closer to economic self-sufficiency.

Refugees are eligible to receive Refugee Employment Services for up to 60 months from arrival to the U.S.. The following core service components are currently offered under the umbrella of Refugee

Employment Services:

Comprehensive Refugee Employment Services (CRES)

CRES encompasses a wide range of job services to refugees, along with supportive English language training. Services include:

  • Orientation to the American Workplace
  • English Literacy instruction for non-literate or low literacy level refugees.
  • Teaching soft and hard skills with the goal of helping refugees obtain and retain a job;
  • job development;
  • employment readiness, search and job placement;
  • 90-day post-employment follow-up;
  • Career laddering opportunities and job upgrades; and
  • Assistance accessing higher education.


Targeted Assistance Grant (TAG/F)

The Targeted Assistance Grant/Formula (TAG/F) program offers employment services to refugees residing in Suffolk, Middlesex, Worcester and Hampden Counties. The purpose of the Targeted Assistance Program is to provide, through a process of local planning and implementation, direct services intended to result in the economic self-sufficiency and reduced welfare dependency through the attainment of employment in less than one year of TAG/F services. In addition to basic job readiness, job placement services and employment-oriented English language instruction as needed, TAG/F provides an ample portfolio of vocational skills training and on-the-job training options with Vocational English Language Training (VELT). Refugees enrolled in TAG/F are allowed to access trainings oriented to find jobs in the Food Service and Hospitality industries learn Customer Service and Computer skills, attend and get certifications for Certified Nurse Assistance (CNA) and/or Home Health Aid (HHA), complete a Medical Interpreters course or attend a sewing training provided in partnerships with employers in the field.

For ORR TAG/F Regulations, go to:

Massachusetts Refugee Enterprise Achievement Program (MassREAP)

MassREAP provides intensive training, support services, and ongoing

technical assistance to refugees who wish to start a new business or need help to sustain or expand an existing business in the Greater Boston, Greater Worcester and Greater Springfield areas of Massachusetts. MassREAP has been designed to tap the entrepreneurial experience and drive found among the state's refugee populations to create new businesses and strengthen existing refugee-owned businesses in the state. Microenterprise development offers an alternative income-producing strategy for refugees who are unemployed or under-employed/in low wage jobs by helping them to develop either small-scale, home-based businesses or traditional “brick-and mortar” business ventures. In addition to these start-ups, MassREAP assists in the stabilization or expansion of existing refugee enterprises, by providing technical assistance to new and current business owners and by facilitating partnerships with lending institutions to help participants establish and improve their credit and secure business loans (ranging from the micro level up to a maximum of $15,000 or more, depending on the lender and business being funded). MassREAP creates and retains jobs and contributes to revitalized and more diverse communities in the Commonwealth.



This information is provided by the Office for Refugees and Immigrants.