Government funding of nonprofit organizations is a dominant trend in American social welfare and it has greatly influenced the voluntary agencies resettling Indochinese refugees. Some agencies identify their clients as international migrants from the Third World, but others view them primarily as welfare recipients. These distinctive master statuses lead agencies to provide different services, thus affecting the refugees' initial adaptation to American society. Religiosity, period of creation, links to the welfare state, and international activities shape the selection of a master status for Indochinese refugees.

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