Citizenship and Assimilation Grant Program

USCIS Awards FY 2018 Citizenship and Assimilation Grants

More than $9 Million Will Expand Citizenship Preparation Services in 19 States

On Sept. 24, 2018, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced the award of $9.425 million in grants to 40 organizations that prepare lawful permanent residents (LPRs) for naturalization. The grants also aim to promote prospective citizens’ assimilation into American civic life by funding educational programs designed to increase their knowledge of English, U.S. history, and civics. Located in 19 states, these organizations will receive federal funding to support citizenship preparation services for LPRs through September 2020.

Background

Since it began in 2009, the Citizenship and Assimilation Grant Program has awarded more than $82 million through 393 competitive grants to immigrant-serving organizations in 38 states and the District of Columbia. Now in its 10th year, the program has helped more than 200,000 LPRs prepare for citizenship.

USCIS anticipates that approximately 25,000 LPRs will receive citizenship preparation services by Sept. 30, 2020, as a result of the fiscal year (FY) 2018 awards issued through the grant program. An additional 12,500 LPRs will be served under the ongoing FY 2017 program, which continues through Sept. 30, 2019.

USCIS awarded the grants through two competitive funding opportunities. The first funding opportunity supports organizations that provide citizenship instruction and naturalization application assistance to LPRs. The second funding opportunity supports organizations that provide extended assimilation services to LPRs who have entered the U.S. as refugees or asylees. These organizations provide critical services to help LPRs obtain the skills and knowledge they need to prepare for the naturalization interview and test, while simultaneously fostering a sense of belonging and attachment to the United States.

In making final award decisions, USCIS took into account various program and organizational factors, including past grantee performance and whether an applicant and any sub-awardees are enrolled in E-Verify.

Organizations that receive awards under this program can only use grant funds to provide services to immigrants who have been lawfully admitted to the U.S. for permanent residence.

Grant Recipient Organizations

Under the Citizenship Instruction and Naturalization Application Services funding opportunity, CI-CET-18-002, grant recipients are public or private nonprofit organizations with recent experience providing citizenship instruction and naturalization application assistance to LPRs. These organizations include community and faith-based groups, public libraries, and adult education and literacy organizations.

Under the Refugee and Asylee Assimilation Program funding opportunity, CI-CET-18-003, grant recipients are also public or private nonprofit organizations with recent experience providing citizenship instruction and naturalization application assistance to LPRs. These organizations must also have extensive experience providing ongoing assimilation services to LPRs who have entered the U.S. as refugees or asylees and have a robust network of local service providers to refer clients to as needed. The organizations include faith-based groups and community organizations.

FY 2018 recipient organizations serve both traditional immigrant population centers and emerging immigrant population centers in 19 states. Grant recipients will provide citizenship preparation services to approximately 25,000 LPRs originally from more than 50 countries. Grant recipients represent:

  • Eight out of the top 10 states with the greatest increase in their LPR population and the most naturalizations between FY 2014 and 2016 including California, New York, Florida, Texas, New Jersey, Illinois, Massachusetts, and Washington;
  • Six out of the top 10 metropolitan areas with the most naturalizations between FY 2014 and 2016 including Newark, Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, Houston, and Seattle; and
  • The top 10 states with the most refugee arrivals in FY 2016 including California, Texas, New York, Michigan, Ohio, Arizona, North Carolina, Washington, Pennsylvania, and Illinois.

FY 2018 Grant Recipients

Grant recipients (in alphabetical order):

Citizenship Instruction and Naturalization Application Services

Organization

Location

Award

Ansob Center for Refugees Astoria, New York $250,000
Boat People SOS Houston, Texas $225,000
Catholic Charities Diocese of Rochester Rochester, New York $225,000
Catholic Charities of Central Texas Austin, Texas $250,000
Catholic Charities of Los Angeles Los Angeles, California $225,000
Catholic Charities of Galveston-Houston Houston, Texas $225,000
Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Stockton Stockton, California $250,000
Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Worcester Worcester, Massachusetts $225,000
Catholic Charities San Bernardino & Riverside San Bernardino, California $225,000
Catholic Migration Services Brooklyn, New York $250,000
Chinese American Service League Chicago, Illinois $250,000
Coptic Orthodox Charities Clearwater, Florida $225,000
Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon Portland, Oregon $250,000
Friendly House Phoenix, Arizona $225,000
Greater Bergen Community Action Hackensack, New Jersey $225,000
Hispanic Unity of Florida Hollywood, Florida $225,000
Hope CommUnity Center Apopka, Florida $225,000
InStepp Durham, North Carolina $225,000
International Rescue Committee of Los Angeles Los Angeles, California $225,000
International Rescue Committee Phoenix, Arizona $225,000
Jewish Family & Children's Service of Pittsburgh Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania $225,000
Jewish Vocational Service of MetroWest East Orange, New Jersey $250,000
La Casa de Don Pedro Newark, New Jersey $225,000
Lancaster-Lebanon Intermediate Unit 13 Lancaster, Pennsylvania $250,000
Lutheran Services in Iowa Des Moines, Iowa $250,000
Lutheran Social Services of South Dakota Sioux Falls, South Dakota $250,000
Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition Boston, Massachusetts $225,000
New American Association of Massachusetts Lynn, Massachusetts $250,000
Oklahoma City University Oklahoma City, Oklahoma $225,000
Opening Doors Sacramento, California $225,000
Polish American Association Chicago, Illinois $250,000
Sea-Mar Community Health Center Seattle, Washington $225,000
Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services Rochester, Minnesota $225,000
Tacoma Community House Tacoma, Washington $250,000
US Together Columbus, Ohio $225,000
York County Literacy Council York, Pennsylvania $225,000

Refugee and Asylee Assimilation Program

Organization

Location

Award

Chaldean Community Foundation Sterling Heights, Michigan $250,000
Catholic Charities of Syracuse Syracuse, New York $250,000
Youth Co-Op Miami, Florida $250,000
Young Women's Christian Association Tulsa Tulsa, Oklahoma $250,000

Review Process

As part of the grant review process, USCIS reviewed more than 90 applications using three-member teams to evaluate each proposal. The reviewers scored applications numerically using published evaluation criteria. USCIS ranked the applications under each funding opportunity based on their average scores. The USCIS internal review panel determined the final list of recipients based on the ranked order, as well as the published strategic program priorities found on pages 21-22 of the notice of funding opportunity for CI-CET-18-002 (PDF, 505 KB) and on pages 25-26 of the notice of funding opportunity for CI-CET-18-003 (PDF, 462 KB)

Contact Information

For additional information on the Citizenship and Assimilation Grant Program, please contact the USCIS Office of Citizenship at citizenshipgrantprogram@uscis.dhs.gov or visit uscis.gov/grants.

For the news release, visit https://www.uscis.gov/news/news-releases/uscis-awards-fy-2018-citizenship-and-assimilation-grants.

To learn more about applying for federal funding opportunities, visit grants.gov or call 800-518-4726.

 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

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