Center of Light


Center of Light


Our Vision

Refugees use their God-given talents to culturally integrate into society and help it thrive.


Our Mission

Creating a community that connects refugees to resources, society, and God.


Who We are

Who We are

About Our Organization


learn who we are...

Center of Light began in the midst of interactions and conversations among refugees and refugee involved organizations in Knoxville, Tennessee. In the fall of 2016 the staff of Center of Light began to see the growing need to serve refugees in the Knoxville area in a wide range of ways. We saw the need for housing, jobs, relationships, and social connections as hundreds and thousands of refugees from more than ten countries started coming to Knoxville. We noticed that in this transition they were struggling to thrive long term. This is where Center of Light will hope to enter into the lives of these refugees and walk alongside of them toward long-term stability. 


Resources, society and god

Resources, society and god

Center of Light will build an affordable housing center in the Knoxville area where refugees can come to live for up to 18 months. In this center refugees will be connected to resources, society, and God
— Isaac Pannell


  • Center of Light will connect refugees to jobs that will provide a living wage by doing honorable work.
  • An intensive English program will ensure that each refugee obtains professional level English before leaving Center of Light.
  • Refugees will have access to life skill classes as well as counseling and advocacy.
  • The refugees will be encouraged to use their skills to find employment at one of our small business ventures, another partner organization, or to start their own small business.


  • Center of Light will connect refugees to society by understanding the culture they are coming from and help them navigate the new American culture which they now call home.
  • We will offer classes to help each refugee attain their citizenship and acquire a drivers license.
  • We will teach on the differences in family structures between cultures and how to understand the rules of society.
  • We will also connect refugees to other Americans so they can develop meaningful relationships within their new cultural setting.


  • Center of Light will connect refugees to God by helping them understand how God has intricately made them.
  • Our organization is managed by followers of God that will seek to display the love that Jesus has for His people and teach the beneficial truths of how to walk with Him.
  • We want to walk alongside our refugee friends as we both learn more about God and understand how to serve Him best.