About Us

About Us

Many asylum-seekers who are held in detention centers while their applications are processed could leave the detention centers if they had somewhere they could legally go. This is where Lemkin House steps in. Lemkin House provides asylum-seekers in West Michigan a safe and welcome place to stay and prepare their cases while they undergo the difficult legal and mental transition from asylum-seeker to asylee. It also provides legal assistance to asylum seekers who do not need a place to stay, but who lack financial resources.


The primary mission of Lemkin House is to provide shelter and support— physical, legal, social, and spiritual— for those people in the West Michigan area who are seeking asylum in the United States.

We are supported and encouraged by many  social service agencies, legal clinics,  private attorneys, and members of religious and academic communities.  Click on Friends under Donate in the menu to see a list.  We collaborate with other NGOs in order to provide more tailored assistance to a particular community– for example, Rwandan genocide survivors, and trafficking victims escaping violence in Central America.

The name “Lemkin House” was chosen to honor the memory of a man who dedicated his life with an absolute passion to give ethnic slaughter a name and make it a crime. In doing so, we hope to continue his legacy and bring a name left in the shadows back into the light. (Click on his name in drop-down menu to learn more about his life.)

In addition, we have expanded our mission to embrace publicizing and criminalizing ecocide, because we believe that the destruction of ecosystems is the flip side of the genocide coin.  Lemkin House is a member of Wild Ones, http://www.wildones.org, and the Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature, http://www.therightsofnature.org.

We urge friends of Lemkin House to learn about and support these organizations.