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Small Nonprofits Helping Resettle Afghan Evacuees Say They Need More Support

Nonprofits are moving at an accelerated rate to resettle them

At a storage unit in Landover, Md., in late September, dozens of volunteers hustled furniture into moving trucks. Their goal was to furnish three apartments by the end of the day — two for a family of eight from Afghanistan, and the other for a family from El Salvador.

"The yellow stuff is all going to the two bedrooms and the orange stuff for the one bedroom," said Laura Thompson Osuri, the director of Homes Not Borders, a Maryland-based nonprofit group that focuses on furnishing homes for refugees resettling in the United States.

In previous years, the group would furnish about one to two homes each week, Osuri said. But since August, when the United States airlifted tens of thousands of people out of Afghanistan and began resettling many of them in this country, volunteers are moving at twice that pace — at times furnishing two apartments in a single day. The nonprofit has rapidly expanded its budget — hiring new staff and purchasing additional storage space — all while relying on private donations.

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