PIE's Inaugural Gala, PIE FOR THE PEOPLE, will be on THURSDAY, MAY 16th!! Come celebrate with us and empower our work by REGISTERING TODAY!

Please join us on Thursday, May 16th, as we turn to an exciting new chapter for PIE with our first ever gala, called PIE FOR THE PEOPLE! We will celebrate our community and raise funds that will support us with critical flexible spending to empower our work. We truly hope you can be a part of this special time in our journey! For registration and more info please click here.

About Us

We are here to guarantee the long-term economic stability of newly arrived refugees and immigrants in King County.
Mission

We are a part of the community that we serve.

Our Mission

PIE works to guarantee the long-term economic stability of newly arrived refugees and immigrants in King County (KC) by providing tailored assistance in language acquisition, housing stabilization, workforce entry, and job training in higher-wage industries.

Our Organization

Partner in Employment(PIE) is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that aims to address the challenges of employment among refugees and immigrants in Washington. PIE’s staff, board members, and volunteers bring a deep understanding of the diverse needs of South King County’s new communities. Thanks to the hard work of our diverse faculty, and philanthropic efforts of our donors, we are able to create livable wage employment opportunities for immigrants and refugees in Washington State. By providing in-language, culturally-competent program designs that responsively support the goals of each client, we are able to build sustainable self-reliance in the immigrant and refugee community.

Our Goal

We know reducing long-term dependency and creating self-reliance is a process that starts at home. That is why PIE plans our direct assistance services around the cultural and familial needs of each client.

We do this in our approach by:

1) Leveraging both TANF (Transitional Assistance for Needy Families) and Non-TANF resources to achieve the goals of Work First and emerging communities.

2) Establishing peer and professionals mentoring activities and opportunities.

3) Collaborating with other agencies supporting employment for refugees and immigrants.

4) Engaging professional immigrants and refugees of all genders to participate and make input in the program development and evaluations.

5) Contributing to community initiatives as and when needed.

6) Advocating for policy changes for services that eliminate poverty among refugee and immigrants communities.

7) Engaging and energizing communities in systems changes.

8) Implementing a pilot project to demonstrate that community-desired system changes and services are successful and fruitful for products consumers.

History

We wouldn’t be here without Amina.

PIE was co-founded by Amina Ahmed and Hien Kieu. In 2018, Amina tragically passed due to a car accident. Her legacy is continued by our current team. We strive to uphold her values and continue her work to help our community through PIE. Amina, thank you for your wisdom and service—you inspire us every day and are missed by everyone.

Board of Directors
Saido Alinur

Saido Alinur

Saido left for the border of Somalia and Kenya in the early 1990s with her family, where they spent three years in a refugee camp located in Mumbasa Kenya. In 1993 she came to the US, helping Somali families with interpretation, translation, filling out immigration papers and job applications in her free time, leading to her current work at Neighborhood house as an Employment Specialist. She began her career as a case manager at African Mutual Assistance Association in St. Louis, Missouri from 2000 to 2003 which gave her the ambition to pursue social work. She has provided resources for the East African communities, held Women’s Support Groups to empower the ladies who were new to the country, and also did bookkeeping for the agency. She has since relocated to Seattle, WA with her family and feels blessed because her clients motivate her as much as she does for them.

Jonathan Weinstein

Jonathan Weinstein

Jonathan’s 30-year career has spanned for-profit business and non-profit projects in the United States and emerging markets. His business career in technology included senior roles at technology startups, Microsoft, and Apple Computer’s software subsidiary Claris Corp. He pursued interests in global development and social enterprise joining Unitus in 2007, a leader in microfinance for the Indian market. He has spent years in Nicaragua where he lives part-time and helped found a triple bottom line housing business. Jonathan graduated Bachelor of Arts with honors from Brown University.

Ben Kieu

Ben Kieu

Benh journeyed to America at the age of three as a refugee from Vietnam.  His personal struggle as a young person growing up in America taught him resiliency and perseverance.  Today, he’s an entrepreneur and a business owner of multiple companies.  As a younger board member, he brings a unique perspective that will support the direction of PIE, especially in supporting youth and young adults.

Maliha Mirza

Maliha Mirza

Maliha is a former refugee from Afghanistan who graduated with her Master from the University of Washington.  Her lived experience and perspectives will provide guidance and direction for the organization to best address the needs of immigrants and refugees.  Maliha is a long time social worker and is currently supporting the health of new Afghan refugees and many other individuals from diverse backgrounds.

Staff
Hien Kieu

Hien Kieu

Executive Director

Hien is an indigenous Cham ethnic of Central Vietnam, grew up in a refugee family who fled to the United States as a result of the Vietnam War, and is the only person in her family to have graduated college. While attending college, she volunteered working with immigrants and refugees and felt immediate connections with the clients and the diverse cultural backgrounds of her colleagues who did similar work. After completing college, she immediately immersed herself in this work and for the next 10 years successfully managed a workforce development program for newly arrived immigrants and refugees. Hien continued her passion in workforce development and joined the former Amina Ahmed in creating a one-of-a-kind organization that strive to create meaningful opportunities in employment and trainings for the LEP, immigrant and refugee population. With the loss of Amina and the heartbreak that came along with it, Hien’s desire to continue Amina’s legacy through the work of PIE grew stronger.

 

Hien is grateful to her team who continue to inspire her every day and to the community to continue entrusting their success in PIE. Hien enjoys hanging out in her backyard barbecuing with her kids and relaxing on her hammock under a massive grape-wrapped pergola; weekend clamming; and walking on the beach while sipping sugarcane juice. Hien is also competitive when it comes to playing sports with her colleagues.

Rother Rashid

Rother Rashid

Program Manager II

Tara McCoy

Tara McCoy

Fiscal Specialist

Mohamed Abdirahman

Mohamed Abdirahman

Program Manager

Ngam Nguyen

Ngam Nguyen

Organizational Development Consultant

Languages: Cham, Vietnamese, English
Mursal Ghiassi

Mursal Ghiassi

Special Projects Coordinator

Languages: Dari, Pashto, Urdu, English
Emilene Castillo

Emilene Castillo

Environmental Program Manager

Languages: English
Abdishakur Hussein

Abdishakur Hussein

Youth Employment Case Manager

Languages: Somali, Kiswahili
Mohamed Worsome

Mohamed Worsome

Employment Practitioner

Languages: Kiswahili, Somali, English
Shukri Mohamed

Shukri Mohamed

Office Assistant

Languages: Somali, English
Adam Chau

Adam Chau

Operations Manager

Languages: Chinese, English
Abdirahman Omar

Abdirahman Omar

Program Director

Languages: Somali, Arabic, English

Quincy Sander

Quincy Sander

ESL & Digital Literacy Instructor

Languages: English

Elizabeth Mayatsa

Elizabeth Mayatsa

YFHPI Case Manager

Languages: Swahili, English
Mohamed Ali

Mohamed Ali

Employment Practitioner

Languages: English, Somali
Claire Igawa

Claire Igawa

Restoration Crew Lead

Languages: English
Aaron Yoon

Aaron Yoon

Development Director

Languages: Korean, English

Bishara Harun

Bishara Harun

Employment Practitioner

Languages: Somali, Swahili, English
Kawsar Elahi

Kawsar Elahi

Housing Stabilization Service Case Manager

Languages: Farsi, Dari, Pashto, English

Kailee Go

Kailee Go

Volunteer Coordinator - Refugee Youth Mentorship Program (RYMP)

Languages: English

Sahar Hameed

Sahar Hameed

Youth Engagement Intern

Languages: Dari, Pashto, English

Elhama Waezzada

Elhama Waezzada

Environment Crew Lead

Languages: Dari, Pashto, English

Caesar Julius Robinson

Caesar Julius Robinson

Community Outreach & Education Coordinator

Languages: English

Halima Salad

Halima Salad

Cafe PIE Barista

Languages: Somali, Swahili, English

Aisha Salad

Aisha Salad

Cafe PIE Barista

Languages: Somali, Swahili, English

Alex Kohari

Alex Kohari

Barista Trainer/Lead

Languages: English, Hungarian

partners

Thank you to our partners.

We have stories to tell…

Patient arrived in the United States just six months before coming to PIE in search of better job opportunities and a support system that could empathize with the struggle of immigrating to the US. After completing high school and starting a job at T-Mobile Park, consultation with PIE’s Refugee Youth Mentoring Program helped Patient identify new interests and supported him in pursuing a more rewarding, higher wage career. 

In the Summer of 2021, Patient began working with Partner in Employment’s Youth Restoration Training Crew to pursue his vision of working in nature. The program allowed him to learn about park maintenance and environmental conservation, meet new people, and explore a new field of interest, all while earning a paycheck.

 

After completing the program, Patient remained engaged with PIE in his search for a job that would allow him to continue on an environmental career path. With the assistance of PIE’s bi-lingual and culturally diverse team, he landed a position with the City of Tukwila’s Parks’ Maintenance division. Later, he shared the following: “I’m still new at my current job, and I love this job. I love working outside seeing the beauty of nature and the fact that I participate in keeping nature makes me so happy. I’m looking forward to learning more new things and getting more experience and I believe I will succeed in this career.”
The team at PIE is so proud of Patient and all the work he has put into expanding his experiences and knowledge. We are constantly inspired by our clients’ perseverance, and we aim to honor their achievements by striving to improve the quality and reach of our own work within the vibrant South King County community.
I was a student at Highline College when I connected with Partner in Employment hoping to enroll in job training that would make me more employable in the environmental field.
I desired to learn more about nature and how we as people can help the natural world. I also wanted to become more confident in my ability to hold a job and work well with other people who I did not know. Most of all, I wanted to be able to turn this job training program into a future career.
The case managers at Partner in Employment introduced me to the Youth Restoration Training Crew. In this way, I was able to learn a ton about the environmental field and how to work on a team.
I became proficient in identifying some of our native and nonnative invasive plants, and also in the removal of those invasives. Throughout the summer, I helped the team remove over 20,000 square feet of invasive plants. With my new knowledge of environmental restoration, I was able to apply for and get a job with the Washington Conservation Corps working on one of their restoration crews.
Now, I am looking forward to seeing where my career in environmental restoration will lead me and am grateful to have joined PIE’s Youth Restoration Training Crew.
Bagora N. is an immigrant from The Democratic Republic of the Congo. Like many others, he was affected by the pandemic and laid off from work.
When Bagora first visited the Partner in the Employment office, he was immensely stressed and disturbed by his unemployment status and the personal complications happening in his family.
Bagora had lived an underprivileged life in Congo. He never had the chance to attend any school in his home country and faced many challenges during his immigration and resettlement to the US.
He was welcomed into PIE with positivity, where the case managers spoke his first language, and everyone at the PIE made sure that the vulnerable client received the support and the services he needed. Soon he was registered into PIE’s job search program and received customized support to address any job barriers alongside the job search. He was also enrolled in PIE’s ESL program, where he received constant and personalized training.
Not only support with the job search, but Bagora has also been training to enhance his soft skills, such as improving his communication skills, adapting to his new life in the US, and learning the life skills that will help him lead a successful life in the US.
PIE has provided different services to Bagora, addressing many of his needs, including transportation and rent payments. After few months of being part of PIE’s job search and ESL program, Bagora is now assertive in reviving his new life in the US. He is attending job interviews and orientations in addition to obtaining the ability to communicate his basic needs in English. Bagora successfully obtained employment with a union employer making $20/hr with potential for growth.
Looking back to when Bagora initially became PIE’s client, today, one can see a promising individual determined to work towards his future contrary to the unhappy and saddened man he used to be. Bagora success story shows PIE’s commitment to assisting clients to reach self-reliance and become vigorous members of the community.

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I am a single father. Last year my daughter came from Ethiopia to live with me, but I had lost my job and was struggling to pay rent. For a while I had no income at all, and we were almost homeless.

As a parent I was scared because I didn’t know how we were going to survive, but luckily my community helped me get in contact with a case manager at Partner in Employment who could speak my language.

PIE paid my rent for two months, and also got me enrolled in an aerospace manufacturing program which I just completed, and now they’re helping me with my resume so that I can get a job which will let me support my family. PIE also enrolled my daughter in their youth mentorship program so that she will continue to be successful in school, and get life success mentorship from someone who understands our culture and speaks our language. She got a job at Panda Express and got accepted to her dream school for aviation, Central Washington University.

I am so thankful for the great help and security that I’ve received from PIE – it has been a turning point for the success of my family.

get involved

Looking to join our team?

Join our PIE family and be part of an organization committed to serving immigrants and refugees in South King County.