The year was 1982. The World’s Fair in Knoxville captured the nation’s attention, and one insolent reporter gave us the “Scruffy City” moniker. At the same time but less widely known, the United Nations High Council for Refugees (UNHCR), through Bridge Refugee Services, began placing Burundian and Congolese refugees in our city.
Twenty-eight years later (2010), refugees and other internationals from around the world populated certain apartment complexes and neighborhoods across metro Knoxville. A few churches and other organizations already served our new international neighbors, but they knew they needed to do more.
The needs—and the number of internationals—continued to grow. In 2014, KIN appointed a full-time director and became an official nonprofit, focusing on education, employment, and healthcare. More recently, in 2021, we added two part-time employees and shifted our focus to empowering volunteers who empower local internationals in an effort to further increase our impact.
Every year since 2014 has brought increasing impact. Check out our timeline (link coming soon) to see all the milestones!
READY TO GET INVOLVED?
Want to hear the stories that have proven KIN's impact? (We're sure you don't have time to hear all the stories we'd love to tell you, but we can choose a few!) Take one of us out for coffee or invite us to speak to your group. We would love to talk more.
Read the stories of Knoxville's local internationals and the volunteers who have impacted their lives. Get a first-hand view of what it's like to move here and/or to serve those who've moved here from other countries. Discover how KIN has impacted life and culture in metro Knoxville.