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ref·u·gee

noun re-fyu-jē/

~ a person who has been forced to leave their country in order to escape war, persecution, or natural disaster. ~ 


What is the difference between refugees, asylum seekers, and migrants?

• Refugees are forced to flee their homes, and are protected under law via the 1951 Refugee Convention .

• Asylum seekers are potential refugees who are requesting sanctuary in another country. 

• Migrants make the choice to leave their country, seeking a better life.

How are refugees vetted?

The hardest way to come to the U.S. is as a refugee. Refugees are vetted more extensively than any other group seeking to enter the U.S., undergoing multiple biometric screenings across multiple government agencies. The process typically takes up to 36 months and is followed by further security checks after refugees arrive in the States. For a step-by-step overview of this process, click here., and also learn more about refugee resettlement on the GAIA blog 

Why does GAIA employ resettled refugee women?

Of 65 million people displaced across the globe, less than 1% are resettled in the U.S. These women have beat the odds, but their arrival to our country does not mark the end of their arduous journey, but the beginning. GAIA was created to provide Living Wage employment, encouragement, & support so that they can build new lives in our community with dignity – and a friend. Learn more about our "Why" here.

What is a Living Wage?

"A wage sufficient to provide the necessities and comforts essential to an acceptable standard of living."  In Dallas, a livable wage for one adult is $11.15, vs the minimum wage of $7.25. At GAIA, we aim to pay our artisans an average of $15 per hour, approximately twice the minimum wage! 

Where do the Artisans work? 

Our Artisans work either at our studio, from home, or a combination of both! We believe a large part of “empowering women” is providing flexible work hours, to allow their jobs to seamlessly coexist with their lives! 

What countries are GAIA’s Refugee Artisans from?

We currently employ women from Burma, Syria, Tunisia, Iraq, Afghanistan, & the Democratic Republic of the Congo. 

What can I do to help resettled refugees? (other than buy some GAIA, obvs!)

• Volunteer and/or donate to refugee resettlement agencies in your area, such as The International Rescue Committee.

• Urge your elected officials to support refugee resettlement programs. 

• Start conversations with others, helping to clarify misconceptions and dispel fears about refugees in the U.S.

• Get to know your refugee neighbors, and make them feel welcome in your community!

More from the blog...

Words of Welcome & Thanks

 from our Customers to GAIA Artisans

Hear how it all began...