Liberians have been settling all over the United States for over four decades. According to the American Community Survey, nearly 8,000 Liberians work and reside, in Central Ohio. LICI’s 2015 Internal Poll puts that number even higher, at 10,000 Liberians.
In 2017, Franklin County Job & Family Services commissioned Community Research Partners, CRP to conduct a study on the needs and challenges of the Liberian community in Franklin County. The research found that Liberians in the County are younger than the general population. Many Liberian youth ages 16 and 17 could be preparing to go to college or entering the workforce; yet, college enrollment in the community is relatively low, and unemployment is astonishingly high. Furthermore, Liberians with college degrees—and many of them—often find that academic degrees earned overseas are not as helpful or comparable to the desired employment they seek within the US. Consequently, the high unemployment within this small population creates stress for individuals and families and financial and economic insufficiencies.