Madison Hayes, the executive director for Refugee Community Partnership, is this week’s WCHL Hometown Hero! Hayes works with the partnership to connect refugees who often do not speak English and may lack documentation of prior education or work with community resources and social programs in order to foster a support system and counter the kind of societal isolation that reinforces persistent poverty and prevents access to opportunities and everyday assistance that many of us take for granted. 

The RCP was founded in 2011 by Asif Khan, then an undergraduate at UNC-CH, and operates with a relatively small budget and over 70 volunteers. The foundation provides assistance understanding English, finding housing, navigating the community, academic mentorship, and also distributes food to well over a hundred individual refugees a week through a partnership with Farmer Foodshare, a Durham-based non-profit. The RCP is a community organization, driven by local involvement and grassroots efforts to improve the lives of people who need it most. Thank you, Madison Hayes, for being a Hometown Hero!