Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Coalition

PA is Ready!

PA is Ready! is an innovative, community-led network and participatory grantmaking fund rooted in and serving diverse immigrant and refugee communities across Pennsylvania. The overarching goal of the PA is Ready! network is to ensure that immigrant communities have the skills and resources necessary for building safe and welcoming communities that promote all resident’s well-being.

October 2017: PA is Ready! grantees meet with donors from the Philadelphia area at a gathering hosted by the Philadelphia Foundation.

The Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Coalition (PICC) serves as the PA is Ready! network coordinator. Network members are united in working toward a Pennsylvania where immigrant communities have the skills and resources necessary for building safe and welcoming communities that promote all resident’s well being. PA is Ready! encourages collaboration between community-based organizations and service providers to provide Pennsylvania immigrant communities with the information, services, and legal assistance they need.

PA is Ready! Framework

After a comprehensive evaluation process in early 2019, PA is Ready! has created a funding framework to guide its work through 2025. The PA is Ready! framework was created by network partners to guide grantmaking decisions that ensure funds support work that is moving toward achieving its broad goals. This framework will be reviewed annually and updated to respond to changing policies and community needs.

  • Leadership Development and Organizational Capacity Building: Develop active leaders within immigrant and refugee communities and build strong organizations that can serve as vehicles for communities to be able to exercise their collective power to make systemic changes and ensure access to the types of services needed to promote collective well-being.
  • Community-Based Immigration Services: Build statewide capacity to provide immigration assistance through community-led, collaborative projects that increase access to needed services in immigrant communities.
  • Enforcement Response: Build statewide capacity to engage in community-based responses to protect and defend immigrant and refugee communities from increased immigration enforcement through collaborative projects that respond to increased ICE enforcement and criminalization of immigrant and refugee communities.
  • Pennsylvania Immigrant Family Unity Project (PAIFUP): Universal representation pilot project at the York Detention Center. Grants administered by the Vera Institute.

PA is Ready! Fund & Grantmaking

Now in its fourth year, PA is Ready! uses a unique participatory grantmaking model grounded in the belief that affected communities and organizations hold valuable expertise. An eight-person committee makes funding decisions. The committee is made up of five organizations elected by members of the PA is Ready! network, a representative of PICC, and two PA is Ready! funders. Investments in PA is Ready! are pooled at the Philadelphia Foundation in a charitable fund. Funders may also choose to support a specific funding priority area identified in the PA is Ready! framework.

Thank you to all PA is Ready! funders since 2014: Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees (GCIR), Alfred and Mary Douty Foundation, Claneil Foundation, Lancaster Community Foundation, Patricia Kind Foundation, Samuel S. Fels. Fund, Union Benevolent Association, William Penn Foundation, Wyomissing Foundation.

PA is Ready! Background

In September 2014, PICC began convening member and partner organizations in anticipation of then President Obama enacting an Executive Order creating new forms of administrative relief for undocumented immigrants currently living in the U.S. which was expected to protect almost 5 million undocumented immigrants. These organizations came together and created PA is Ready! as a vehicle for providing quality, high-volume services across Pennsylvania. Network members developed a service model that would ensure that Pennsylvania immigrant community members had access to the information and assistance they needed to apply for both existing and anticipated forms of relief, and began raising funds to support collaborative projects utilizing the service model. Despite the Supreme Court’s tie vote in June 2016 that halted the implementation of new forms of administrative relief, the PA is Ready! network pressed forward in recognition of the many already unmet needs of immigrant communities across the Commonwealth.


The 2020 PA is Ready! Grant Application is open! Download materials and apply by March 22, 2020.

Download 2020 PA is Ready! summary

Read the full 2019 Evaluation Report.

Read more about the 2018 and 2019 PA is Ready! grants.

Read more about PA is Ready! in the Social Innovations Journal.

For more information, please contact Sundrop Carter, Executive Director.


PA is Ready! Network Members

PA is Ready! members include grassroots community groups, legal service providers, faith communities and other nonprofit organizations. Membership is based on the organization having been previously funded through the PA is Ready! fund and maintaining active involvement in the network.

  • ACLAMO Family Centers
  • Aquinas Center
  • Asian Americans United
  • Bhutanese Community Association of Pittsburgh
  • CASA
  • Casa de la Cultura
  • Casa San Jose
  • Ceiba
  • Centro de Apoyo Comunitario
  • Church World Service – Lancaster
  • Coalition of African Communities (AFRICOM)
  • Comite de Apoyo a los Trabajadores Agricolas (CATA)
  • Esperanza Immigration Legal Services
  • Free Migration Project
  • Grupo de Apoyo
  • HIAS PA
  • Immigrant Rights Action
  • International Service Center
  • Jewish Family and Community Services
  • Juntos
  • Justice at Work
  • Make the Road PA
  • Movement of Immigrant Leaders in PA (MILPA)
  • Nationalities Services Center
  • Pennsylvania Immigration Resource Center (PIRC)
  • Project Libertad
  • VietLead
  • Welcoming the Stranger