Lutheran Children and Family Service (LCFS,) the largest refugee resettlement agency in Pennsylvania, welcomes Jessica Knapp as Refugee Program Coordinator to lead its refugee services office in Lancaster. Knapp will supervise a staff of ten, which includes case workers, employment specialists and an ESL (English as a second language) teacher. Additionally, she will focus on community outreach. LCFS’ Lancaster office resettles up to 200 refugees each year. They also provide employment services to approximately 225 refugees annually.
“LCFS is pleased to welcome Jessica to the program. It’s great to see how she is connecting with the local refugee community, partner agencies, and the faith community,” said Todd Miller, LCFS Refugee Program Manager. “We believe Jessica’s knowledge and experience will be vital in providing quality services to our clients in the Lancaster area.”
Knapp previously worked as Matching Grant Employee Specialist and a Placement Caseworker for the International Rescue Committee in Silver Spring, Maryland and as Refugee Resettlement/Matching Grant Intern at Church World Service in Lancaster. A native of Harrisburg, Knapp holds a Master of Arts in International Studies with a concentration in African Studies from Ohio University in Athens, Ohio. She also has a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies from Otterbein College, in Westerville, Ohio. Knapp traveled to Rwanda in December 2008 as a student at Otterbein College, where she worked in an orphanage and at an HIV/AIDS clinic in Musanze. She traveled back in 2011 as a member of a human rights delegation with Global Youth Connect, which allowed her to witness what refugees experience before they get selected for placement in the U.S.
“I am excited to be here with such a passionate and dedicated staff, providing refugees with a smooth transition as they start their new lives in the U.S.,” Knapp said. “I am also very impressed by the Lancaster community and how supportive they are to the work we do.”
Jessica resides in Mechanicsburg with her husband and son.
Lutheran Children and Family Service is a non-profit social service organization that offers a broad scope of community-based services to a diverse clientele of children, families and seniors throughout Eastern and Central Pennsylvania. LCFS’ programs include foster care, adoption, family preservation/reunification, Best-out-of-school-time (BOOST) and high school WorkReady, the West Philadelphia Senior Community Center, refugee resettlement and employment services, immigration legal services and refugee mental health programming. By collaborating with a wide network of individuals and agency supporters, LCFS has become the largest refugee resettlement provider in Pennsylvania with office locations in Philadelphia, Lancaster and Allentown. LCFS is a division of Liberty Lutheran; a multi-service organization based in Ambler, PA. For more information, www.lcfsinpa.org