In 2015, Northwest Arkansas residents from across the community (Bentonville, Fayetteville, Springdale, and Siloam Springs) came together to respond to the ongoing global refugee crisis.

These community members wanted to do something to help but quickly found that there were very few ways to support refugees through resettlement assistance in the state of Arkansas. As there was not an active resettlement agency in Northwest Arkansas, this group united with the desire to provide refugees with a good, safe home and the understanding that NWA would be a stronger, more diverse community thanks to these new neighbors.

The grassroots interest in welcoming refugees continued to grow and spurred community action. That’s how Canopy came to fruition. In February of 2016, this group began organizing to meet the criteria to become a refugee resettlement agency.

Canopy partnered with Global Refuge as an affiliate. In October of 2016, Canopy was officially designated as a refugee resettlement site. And in December of 2016, Canopy welcomed its first refugee family to Northwest Arkansas.