Our Mission

Nashville International Center for Empowerment’s mission is to ensure refugees and immigrants achieve their full potential now and for generations to come. Our goal is to empower refugees and immigrants with resources and opportunities that will aid them in their resettlement and equip them to be successful in the future.

We do this by:

  • Advocating for refugees and immigrants
  • Building strong community of relationships
  • Creating sustainable service programs
  • Developing partnerships in Middle Tennessee

History of NICE

In 2005, the Nashville International Center for Empowerment (NICE) was founded by a group of Sudanese refugee men and women, including our President/CEO Dr. Gatluak Ter Thach, who desired to help other refugees and immigrants living in Middle Tennessee. 

Many of the center’s founders came to the United States in the 1990s from war-torn Sudan, with the goal of finding a safe place to live, work, and raise their families. However, most Sudanese refugees had little educational experience due to the war, making their resettlement extremely difficult. 

The experiences of these founders prompted the creation of NICE, so they could help others with skills that would help them gain their independence and self‐sufficiency in their new home.

Where We Are Today from President & CEO: Dr. Gatluak Ter Thach

“Greater Nashville continues to see an incredible influx of refugees and immigrants from all over the world and the demand for refugee services rises. The challenges faced by the NICE target population are often exacerbated by ‘mainstream’ support systems that often do not account for the steep access problems facing non-native English speakers, the majority of whom are unfamiliar with American culture. I can testify to this myself. Our primary goal remains the same, to empower refugees and immigrants through English literacy, but there has been an increase in demand for a wider range of services which has led to the diversification of NICE offerings.”

Fundamental to our mission is targeting the root causes of poverty within greater Nashville’s refugee and immigrant community, creating opportunities for upward socioeconomic mobility, and the social integration of those it serves.

We aim to increase our clients’ abilities to effectively read, write, and speak English, facilitating long-term independence and stability. Leading to sustainable employment and self-sufficiency for adults and ongoing academic achievement for children, thereby addressing the underlying issues contributing to poverty in our community.

Clients are encouraged and challenged to think beyond their current circumstances and discuss long-term goals. NICE makes every effort to establish the foundation necessary to achieve these goals by placing clients in educational and employment environments that are conducive to ultimate success.


Nashville International Center for Empowerment would like to say thank you to each of our generous donors. We would not be able to offer the services we do without your contributions.