University of Virginia Center Earns Recognition for Efforts to Hire Refugees

June 20, 2006 -- The University of Virginia’s Center for Comparative Medicine (CCM) has been selected for this year’s International Rescue Committee (IRC) Employer Leadership Award.

The IRC is a nonprofit organization dedicated to assisting people who must flee their countries of origin due to violence and war or racial, religious and ethnic persecution. The IRC’s Charlottesville office helps about 150 refugees per year to settle in the area and find employment.

According to Susan Donovan, Regional Resettlement Director for the IRC’s Charlottesville office, the purpose of this award is “to emphasize the win-win relationship that exists when area employers hire refugees to meet their workforce needs, which in turn offers refugees an opportunity to resume control over their lives.” To date, the CCM has provided placement for fifteen refugees.

This is the third year that the IRC has honored a local employer with the award. Previous recipients include the Omni Hotel and Farmington Country Club. The recognition will coincide with a June 20 celebration of World Refugee Day.