Center For Intercultural Organizing

Rating: 4.89 stars   83 reviews


700 N Killingsworth Street Portland OR 97217 USA


The Center for Intercultural Organizing (CIO) is a diverse, grassroots membership organization working to build a multi-racial, multicultural movement for immigrant and refugee rights.


Over nearly a decade, CIO has engaged thousands of individuals from diverse cultural, ethnic, and religious backgrounds, trained new immigrant and refugee community leaders, produced hundreds of educational events and mobilized countless immigrant and refugee community members to participate in civic life, and continually responded to individual incidents of discrimination and harassment in our community as they arise.

Target demographics:

immigrants and refugees from over 70 countries of origin.

Direct beneficiaries per year:

hundreds of immigrants and refugees, who together advocate for just policies that will improve the lives of thousands

Geographic areas served:

Oregon and Southwest Washington


Community Education: CIO educates immigrants, refugees and U.S.-born allies on pressing community issues and strengthens and supports existing efforts to bring visibility to immigrant and refugee struggles. Civic Engagement and Policy Advocacy: Our civic engagement program provides a pathway for immigrants and refugees to participate in democratic processes through training programs, hands-on projects and collective action that produce concrete improvements in their lives. Organizing and Mobilization: CIO assists immigrant and refugee community members in building the organizing skills necessary to impact policies that affect them and to work collaboratively, mobilizing diverse constituencies. Intergenerational Leadership Development: CIO develops new leaders through a signature yearlong leadership development program, through strategic trainings, and through on-the-ground leadership positions within our campaigns.

2015 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Reviews for Center For Intercultural Organizing

Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

Hello everyone, I was a participant in the PILOT Program with the Center for Intercultural Organizing (CIO). I enjoyed every moment spent participating in the PILOT Program. It was interesting how participants came from diverse backgrounds to learn and share experiences. Taking part in this program gave me an opportunity to be among a diverse group since I immigrated to the United States. It is amazing to learn about different cultures and to find out that though we come from different backgrounds, we all have something in common.
I enjoyed the blend of the activities during our PILOT Retreat; learning , playing and resting. I learn about my community - Oregon from the questions and answers. I was able to demonstrate my talents and share my experiences in life.
We also had amazing CIO staff and one more thing was the great powerhouse provided to us. Indeed, it was an awesome experience.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I had the chance to participate in the PILOT training program conducted by the Center for Intercultural Organizing (CIO). During the training I noticed how the CIO staff members were very professional, well trained, organized, and committed. Moreover, I was amazed how the CIO successfully represents the diverse community, were members from various backgrounds and ethnicities embraced to form a strong non-profit organization that advocate the rights of immigrants and refugees.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?


How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?


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Rating: 5 stars  

I came here as a refugee and wanted to make a difference for my community that was suffering from poverty, isolation and war trauma. In the CIO, I found the training that has helped me not only help my community but connect to leaders of other immigrant and refugee communities and also people of color in the United States. The skills I learned are so valuable, but the relationships are even more. Thank you, CIO!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Graduate of the Pan Immigrant Leadership and Organizing Training (PILOT) Program

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Increase the donors and supporters

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

in the years I worked as a policy director and education strategy coordinator for then Portland City Commissioner and now Mayor, our work with CIO not only helped inform us on an array of concerns, we worked together to solve community problems. We turned to CIO to bring together representatives from many communities too often not "at the table" to make decisions and develop policies to ensure we all work together. They are a very effective organization with strong and wise leadership. I greatly respect the work of CIO. They are continuing to build relationships which ensure that including underrepresented communities becomes the norm. The issues I worked most directly with CIO on regarded public safety and planning issues. Their participation and contributions were invaluable.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Together we designed the public involvement process for the Portland Plan, our longterm planning effort. We worked hard to ensure a broad representation of our communities have genuine and accessible involvement in that planning process and outcomes.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Provide them the time and resources to continue developing. I believe they are doing it well; they have a broad base of communities represented, work to build their leaders from within as well as reaching out to new individuals or organizations. They are strong without being strident, which I found very important in working with our City leadership. They understand well the importance of when to listen and when to make sure their points are understood, when to compromise and when to stand firm.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

I have been fortunate to participate and be a part of an organization such as Center for Intercultural Organizing! Through its continuous efforts to educate members in the community, CIO continues to impress me in continually striving towards systemic change. As a proud member, I support its mission and hope to continually work with the organization to empower members of the immigrant and refugee community!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have been rewarded by it's top-level of training and workshops that continue to hone my passions to work toward improving access to services for the immigrant and refugee community, not only in Oregon, but also worldwide.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

work in building partnerships with other community organizations and non-profits that are working towards the same efforts in Portland.

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Review from Guidestar