Immigrants, Refugees and Non-Native Speakers

Immigrants, Refugees and Non-Native Speakers



Academic OneFile, General OneFile and Newsstand offer limited text and audio translation of full text files in up to 32 languages - Afrikaans, Bengali, Czech, Chinese,  Croatian, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hindi, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Malaysian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, Tagalog, Tamil, Thai, Turkish, Vietnamese and Welsh.

Gale Academic OneFile  
Peer-reviewed, full-text articles from the world's leading journals and reference sources. NOVELny. Virtual Tour

Gale General OneFile
A one-stop source for news and periodical articles on a wide range of topics. Features millions of full-text articles, many with images that are updated on a daily basis. NOVELny.  Virtual Tour

Gale OneFile: News
Provides full-text searches of a collection of more than 1,000 newspapers. NOVELny Virtual Tour

Online Dictionaries 

Digital Dictionaries of South Asia
This site, hosted by the University of Chicago, features online dictionaries for languages spoken in the Middle East, the Indian subcontinent, and Southeast Asia.

From Language to Language
Online translation tool for 47 languages.

Online Burmese-English dictionary   

Drum Publications Skype online interpreter  
Free online interpreter service for Karen and Burmese refugees from Thailand (requires Skype).

Karen-English online language database

Karen-English dictionary

Kurdish-English dictionary

Nepali-English dictionary

Pushto-English dictionary

Somali-English dictionary

Online Education 

Bow Valley College English Literacy Readers
A collection of forty theme-based readers, along with an instructor's guide to support English as a New Language instruction programs.

Easy English - YouTube

Animated video clips include English dialogues in different everyday settings for beginner to upper-intermediate learners. Useful English phrases and idioms and grammar tips are helpful for any English learner.

ESL Video

Contains a large collection of short films and video clips with captions, quizzes, and classroom materials. 

Goodwill Community Classroom
Online English reading programs in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Korean, Portuguese, and Spanish.


New York State Department of Education Online Lessons
Includes links to videos and PBS programming for developing workplace skills, English language proficiency, civics, and citizenship.   

Preparing for the Oath
The Smithsonian Museum of American History's online study guide for the civics portion of the U.S. Naturalization Test.

Community and Local Links

American Civil Liberties Union's Immigrants Right Project
Using targeted impact litigation, advocacy, and public outreach, the ACLU protects the rights and liberties of immigrants.

Buffalo Public Schools Adult Education Program
Buffalo Schools Adult Education Division offers over 50 ESL classes for non-native speakers who need to develop better skills in English. Classes run five days a week and are free of charge at 10 different locations throughout the city of Buffalo.

Erie 1 Boces (ESL)
Featuring free adult English classes of various levels, which include speaking, listening, writing, and reading.

The U.S. National Library of Medicine's site for exploring health topics by language, including audio and video in Arabic, Bengali, Farsi, French, Karen, Nepali, Pashto, Somali, and Spanish.
Immi helps immigrants in the U.S. understand their legal options. The online screening tool, legal information, and referrals to nonprofit legal services organizations are always free to use. Immi was created by the Immigration Advocates Network and Pro Bono Net, two nonprofit organizations dedicated to increasing access to justice for low-income immigrants. 

Immigrants, Refugees, and Languages Spoken in Buffalo
Partnership for the Public Good's Buffalo Brief gives facts and statistics concerning Buffalo's immigrant and refugee population from 2000 to 2017.  

International Institute
Provides refugee, immigrant, interpreting, and translation services.

Jericho Road Hope Refugee Drop-in Center
Provides culturally sensitive caseworkers and translators to assist refugees with financial, medical, and occupational issues.

Jewish Family Service of Buffalo
Programs and services to immigrants and refugees.

Journey's End Refugee Center
Provides refugees with the resources and support they need to become successful, active and contributing members of the Western New York Community.

Legal Aid Bureau of Buffalo
Specialized Legal Services for Immigrants and Refugees.

Literacy New York Buffalo-Niagara
Serving individuals looking to improve their reading skills and the growing population of recently relocated refugees and immigrants in the area who may not speak or read English.

New Face of Buffalo
A short-form documentary series demonstrating a cultural exchange within the diverse and evolving city of Buffalo, NY. 

New York State Office for New Americans
New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo established the Office for New Americans to assist newcomers to New York State who are eager to contribute to our economy and become part of the family of New York State.

Safe, Smart and Healthy: Keys to Success in Your New Home
This one-page handout with accompanying video published by the U.S. National Library of Medicine educates people about substance use and abuse. It discusses alcohol and the law, natural and prescription medications, driving under the influence, and smoking bans, and health issues of secondhand smoke. Available in English, Amharic, Arabic, Burmese, Dari, Dzongkha, Farsi, Hakha Chin, Karen, Kinyarwanda, Kirundi, Nepali, Somali, Swahili, Tigrinya, and Turkish

U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services
The Department of Homeland Security's website for obtaining forms and information, checking case status, and making appointments.

Western New York Council on Occupational Safety and Health (WNYCOSH)
WNYCOSH has empowered hundreds of thousands of workers including young workers, refugee and immigrant workers, low-wage workers, and workers in high hazard industries through direct training to identify, evaluate and control hazards in the workplace.  Information on worker righters are available in 14 languages at


Library Materials

Click on the following topics for a quick search in the Library's Catalog.

English as a Second Language (ESL) materials
English dictionaries
English grammar and usage
ESL for speakers of Amharic
ESL for speakers of Arabic 
ESL for speakers of Bosnian
ESL for speakers of Burmese
ESL for speakers of Cambodian
ESL for speakers of Cantonese
ESL for speakers of Chinese 
ESL for speakers of Croatian
ESL for speakers of Farsi
ESL for speakers of Hindi
ESL for speakers of Japanese
ESL for speakers of Karen
ESL for speakers of Korean
ESL for speakers of Nepali
ESL for speakers of Polish
ESL for speakers of Portuguese
ESL for speakers of Punjabi
ESL for speakers of Russian
ESL for speakers of Serbian
ESL for speakers of Somali
ESL for speakers of Spanish
ESL for speakers of Tagalog
ESL for speakers of Thai
ESL for speakers of Urdu
ESL for speakers of Vietnamese
U.S. Citizenship