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Citizenship and Integration Grant Program

The application submission period is closed. Check back in September 2014 for the announcement of award recipients.


Fiscal Year 2014 Citizenship and Integration Grant Program

On April 1, 2014, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) began accepting applications for a competitive grant funding opportunity to promote immigrant civic integration and prepare permanent residents for citizenship. USCIS will offer up to $10 million in competitive funding for citizenship preparation programs in communities across the country. This funding opportunity is for public or non-profit organizations that prepare permanent residents for citizenship by offering both citizenship instruction and naturalization application services. Applications are due by May 16, 2014.

Funding Opportunity:DHS-14-CIS-010-002
Application Deadline:May 16, 2014 (No extensions)
Estimated Number of Awards:  Up to 40
Anticipated Funding Amount:Up to $10,000,000
Performance Period:Two years (comprising two one-year budget periods)
Anticipated Award Date:September 17, 2014
Maximum Grant Award:Maximum grant award is $250,000 ($125,000 for the first year budget period and $125,000 for the second year budget period)

How to Apply

Program Requirements

Determining Eligibility

Past Grant Recipients

Application Information

Contact Information

Background

Program Requirements

To be a funded program, you must provide the following two types of services under the funded program:

  1. Citizenship instruction to prepare permanent residents for the civics (U.S. history and government) and English (reading, writing, and speaking) components of the naturalization test. You must use a nationally normed standardized test of English proficiency to place and assess students. You also must provide at least 40 hours of citizenship instruction over an 8-15 week class cycle for students at or below the NRS1 high beginning level and at least 24 hours of citizenship instruction over an 8-15 week class cycle for all other students. You must enroll at least 200 permanent residents in citizenship instruction classes over the two year period of performance. Each teacher, whether volunteer or paid, must have at least one year of experience teaching English as a Second Language (ESL) or citizenship to adults.  
  2. Naturalization application services, provided within the scope of the authorized practice of immigration law, to support permanent residents in the naturalization application and interview process. You must provide naturalization eligibility screening; you must prepare and submit Form N-400, Application for Naturalization and Form G-28, Notice of Entry of Appearance as Attorney or Accredited Representative; and ongoing case management. You and/or your sub-awardees are required to prepare and submit at least 200 naturalization applications (Form N-400, Application for Naturalization with accompanying Form G-28, Notice of Entry of Appearance as Attorney or Accredited Representative) over the two year period of performance. Services may also include interview preparation, a representative’s appearance at the naturalization interview, and filing of other forms or documents (such as Form N-648, Medical Certification for Disability Exceptions), if applicable. The primary legal service provider must be an employee at the applicant organization or at the sub-awardee organization. Pro bono or volunteer attorneys may be used to supplement the program. Attorneys and Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) accredited representatives must sign each Form N-400 as the preparer, submit a Form G-28 with each Form N-400 filed under this grant, and mail the naturalization application package to USCIS on behalf of the client.

Determining Eligibility

  1. You must be an organization with public or nonprofit status. This includes, but is not limited to:
    • Public or private nonprofit organizations
    • Public school systems, universities and community colleges
    • Civic, community and faith-based organizations
    • Adult-education organizations
    • Public libraries
    • Volunteer and literacy organizations
    • State and local governments
  2. At the time you apply, you and any sub-awardees that propose to provide citizenship instruction must have, in the past three years, provided at least one year of direct service citizenship instruction in a classroom setting that follows a curriculum.
  3. At the time you apply, you and any sub-awardees that propose to provide naturalization application services must have, in the past three years, provided at least one year of naturalization application services within the authorized practice of immigration law to clients, and must:
    • Be recognized by the BIA and have at least one BIA accredited representative employee with experience providing clients with naturalization representation; or
    • Have at least one attorney employee with experience providing clients with naturalization representation.

Past Grant Recipients

If you received a grant under the fiscal year (FY) 2013 Citizenship and Integration Grant Program funding opportunity DHS-13-CIS-010-002, you are ineligible for the FY 2014 funding opportunity because the FY 2013 program’s two-year period of performance will not expire before the start of the new program.

Application Information

You must apply electronically for this grant using the application package and instructions available at www.grants.gov. You can find detailed application instructions in the funding opportunity announcement and on www.grants.gov.

You and any sub-applicants applying for federal funding must have a Dun and Bradstreet Universal Data Numbering System (DUNS) number and must register with the System for Award Management (SAM).

The Grants.gov website at www.grants.gov/applicants/get_registered.jsp provides step-by-step instructions for obtaining a DUNS number and registering with SAM. USCIS strongly encourages you to obtain or update all registrations related to Grants.gov in advance of the May 16, 2014 deadline. USCIS has developed a tip sheet to help you prepare your proposals.

Contact Information

For additional information and updates on the FY 2014 Citizenship and Integration Grant Program, visit www.uscis.gov/grants or contact the USCIS Office of Citizenship by email at citizenshipgrantprogram@uscis.dhs.gov.

USCIS will hold a stakeholder engagement on April 8, 2014, to address questions regarding the program. For more information on this engagement, visit www.uscis.gov/outreach/upcoming-national-engagements. To learn more about applying for federal funding opportunities, visit www.grants.gov or contact the Grants.gov support line at 1-800-518-4726.

Please direct all media inquiries to the USCIS Office of Communications at 202-272-1200.

Background

Since the establishment of the Citizenship and Integration Grant Program in FY 2009, USCIS has awarded approximately $33 million through 182 grants to immigrant-serving organizations that have provided citizenship preparation services to more than 78,000 permanent residents in 33 states and the District of Columbia.  

Through this grant opportunity, USCIS seeks to expand the availability of high-quality citizenship preparation services. Increased learning opportunities and additional citizenship instruction resources in communities will help permanent residents improve their English language skills, increase their knowledge of U.S. history and government, and understand the rights and responsibilities of U.S. citizenship. Expanding the availability of citizenship preparation programs will help interested permanent residents access the support they need to successfully become U.S. citizens.


1 National Reporting System for Adult Education (NRS)

Last Reviewed/Updated: 04/01/2014