The current COVID-19 pandemic magnifies the inequities that immigrant communities in Pennsylvania already experience. While immigrant rights organizations across the state are working together to create long-term policy change – from passing legislation to provide tuition equity for all students to access driver’s licenses for all PA residents to ending local law enforcement collaboration with ICE – they also recognize that it is essential to take care of people in this moment of crisis.
In the first weeks of this pandemic, over 40 organizations across Pennsylvania came together to form the PA Immigrant Relief Fund, a statewide fund that will provide direct emergency assistance to people excluded from federal COVID-19 assistance programs due to their immigration status or the immigration status of a family member and are in need of immediate financial assistance.
#ShareYourCheck: Share all or a portion of your stimulus check to help vulnerable immigrant families in Pennsylvania! Every dollar donated here will be directed to community-based organizations to be distributed as emergency assistance to eligible individuals.
The PA Immigrant Relief Fund will:
- Provide one-time direct emergency assistance to community members in need, in the form of $800 cash assistance.
- Maintain a centralized list of recipients and distribution methods to avoid duplication, with coordination provided by the Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Coalition (PICC).
The PA Immigrant Relief Fund has set a goal of raising $4 million by June 30, 2020 to assist 5,000 community members that would otherwise be excluded from COVID-19 assistance programs.
The first round of funding was distributed to organizations in early May. Stay tuned for details on how organizations can participate in future distributions.
This fund is hosted by PA is Ready!, 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. The PA is Ready! fund is housed at the Philadelphia Foundation, and the Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Coalition (PICC) serves as the PA is Ready! network coordinator.
You can also give to this fund through the Philadelphia Foundation. To direct your donation to the PA Immigrant Relief Fund, scroll down, and under “Select a Cause and Gift Amount” search for PA is Ready! Fund.
The following organizations worked to create the PA Immigrant Relief Fund:
- ACLAMO Family Centers
- African Family Health Organization
- Aquinas Center
- Archdiocese of Phila. – Office of Immigrants & Refugees
- Asian Americans United
- Casa de la Cultura
- Casa San Jose
- Centro de Apoyo Comunitario
- Church World Service – Lancaster
- Coalition for Restaurant Safety & Health
- 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
- Justice at Work
- La Puerta Abierta
- Make the Road PA
- Mighty Writers
- Movement of Immigrant Leaders in PA (MILPA)
- Nationalities Services Center
- New Sanctuary Movement
- Pennsylvania Immigration Resource Center
- Project Libertad
- Puentes de Salud
- Put People First
- Victim/Witness Services S. Philadelphia
- Welcoming the Stranger