The U.S. resettlement program currently resettles refugees in communities of similar or the same ethnic background known as like‐ethnic communities. This practice provides resettled refugees with a familiar community who may be able to provide support through the difficult resettlement process. However, by associating with a like‐ethnic community, resettled refugees may limit interaction with the host community, which may have subsequent adverse effects on well‐being.
This study examined whether satisfaction with community support is moderated by a premigration factor (trauma history) or a postmigration factor (English fluency) in predicting depressive symptoms in a resettled refugee community (N = 179). Four moderation models were analyzed and compared.
The model in which English fluency moderated the relationship between satisfaction with community support and depressive symptoms had the best overall model fit. In addition, trauma history was found to also be a meaningful but secondary moderator within this relationship. English fluency and trauma history within this study did not significantly interact.
These results highlight the importance of early English language lessons and community support during resettlement. Further, they emphasize the need to integrate refugees with individuals from similar backgrounds, as well as with host communities throughout resettlement.