As of October 1, 2023, newly paroled Afghan Humanitarian Parolees are not eligible for ORR services and federal mainstream benefits.


This means an Afghan humanitarian parolee arriving on or after October 1, 2023, is not eligible for many federal and refugee benefits such as Medicaid, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP/food stamps), or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF). Afghan humanitarian parolees who arrive on or after October 1, 2023, are also ineligible for financial assistance from the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) and ORR-funded programs and services provided through resettlement agencies, including Preferred Communities or Matching Grant.


There are some exceptions. The following immediate relatives are eligible for ORR programs and services, including public benefits, financial assistance, and case management support at resettlement agencies:


Afghan Humanitarian Parolee
  • Afghan citizen or national
  • Entered the U.S. with parole between July 31, 2021 and September 30, 2023

Relative (Spouse or Child)

  • Spouse or unmarried under 21-year-old children of ORR-Eligible Afghan parolee
  • Entered/enters the U.S. with parole
  • Can enter the U.S. after September 30, 2023 and still be eligible to receive ORR benefits
Relative (Parent or legal guardian of unaccompanied child)
  • Parent or legal guardian of an unaccompanied under 18-year-old Afghan child parolee
  • Entered/enters the U.S. with parole
  • Can enter the U.S. after September 30, 2023 and still be eligible to receive ORR benefits


Afghans without a qualifying family relationship who enter the United States after September 30, 2023 cannot rely on government assistance and should have a strong financial supporter or enough personal funds to be self-sufficient until they are employed.


Afghan nationals who have another ORR-eligible immigration status or category, such as refugee, Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) holder, or asylee, are eligible for ORR refugee benefits and services in the standard manner. They are not required to enter within a particular timeframe, and the duration of their eligibility is not affected by their immigration status or category.

State-Level Benefits and Other Resources


All humanitarian parolees are eligible for marketplace healthcare plans. Humanitarian parolees have access to subsidies, but the cost of insurance and the amount of subsidies may differ by state and by family. In some states, humanitarian parolees are eligible for Medicaid, and in others, they are eligible for the public option. In many states, Emergency Medicaid may offer coverage for certain conditions.


Check with your local public benefits office to determine what your state provides. Below are some ways that states are working to provide assistance:


  • Some states provide state-funded healthcare subsidies to those who are ineligible for federal healthcare subsidies.
  • Other states, such as Washington and California, have public healthcare options that anyone can access regardless of immigration status.
  • California and Minnesota provide state-funded Medicaid for populations ineligible for federally funded Medicaid.
  • Women, Infants and Children (WIC): WIC provides targeted nutritional support to women, infants and children up to age five years old regardless of immigration status. You can search for the WIC program in your area here.


The IRC’s Virtual Resettlement Line (VRL) will continue providing resources and referrals for Afghan Humanitarian Parolees. If you need assistance and are ineligible for services from a resettlement agency, call VRL at (212) 551-3010 or email VRL at for assistance.


Many areas in the U.S. have food banks that support individuals and families with additional food. Food banks have different eligibility and rules for how often you receive food. You can find your local food bank by putting in your zip code here. You can also search the internet using key words such as: food bank, food pantry, and food distribution to access free food resources closest to you.


Additionally, the phone number 211 is a free, confidential helpline available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. If you are looking for information and resources to address essential needs like housing, food and financial assistance, they might be able to help you. Their service is available in 180 languages and they operate in all 50 states. You can enter your zip code or city and state in the search on this website to find more information about the 211 in your area or dial 211 from your phone. If you need help in a language other than English, say “No English. I Speak ________” and then wait on the line.  To explore their services online, visit this link:


NOTE: The U.S. government has not legally authorized the same funding to Afghanistan as it had previously. Should the U.S. Congress agree upon new or other funding legislation in the future, a revision to this information will be issued.