Philadelphia Social Innovations Journal
Social Innovations to Address Immigrant Needs
You are INVITED to attend SOCIAL INNOVATIONS TO ADDRESS IMMIGRANT NEEDS: HOW SOCIAL SECTOR LEADERS IN AMERICA’S CITIES CAN STRENGTHEN IMMIGRANT SERVICES AND POLICIES SYMPOSIUM on SEPTEMBER 25, 2017 from 3:00 – 6:30 (including reception)
LOCATION: Calvary Center for Culture & Community, 841 S. 48thStreet, Philadelphia, PA 19143 (“The Calvary Center for Culture and Community (CCCC) is a short 15- to 20-minute ride from Center City on trolley line #34”)
America’s cities have long been a gateway for immigrant arrivals, and urban areas continue to house the majority of the foreign-born in the United States. As urban immigrant populations have grown through successive waves of immigrants, many cities have developed rich networks of nonprofits and community groups and innovative programs to support immigrant and refugee populations. Municipal governments have recognized and appreciated the many benefits that immigrants bring to their cities, including cultural diversity, population growth, and economic development. At the same time, these city governments have sometimes struggled to address challenges associated with integrating diverse, low-income, and limited English proficient (LEP) populations.
For years, the lack of comprehensive immigration reform at the federal level and inadequate, or in some cases, hostile policies toward immigrants by state governments, have left city governments and local nonprofits and community groups to shoulder much of the responsibility for addressing the needs of immigrant and refugee communities. Recent hardline anti-immigrant actions by the Trump administration have heightened an already conflicted and politically charged national debate over immigration, escalating tensions between city, state and federal levels of government regarding immigrant policies. America’s cities are likely to remain focal points on immigration policy for the foreseeable future, and current tensions may intensify in the months to come with protracted legal battles and uncertainty around policy and government funding, and continued confusion and fear among immigrant and refugee communities.
At this time of heightened debate regarding the policy landscape and funding environment for immigration services and advocacy, this symposium examines successful and innovative models for delivering integration services to immigrant and refugee communities and promoting pro-immigrant policies at the municipal level and beyond. Using a place-based approach that provides an in-depth examination of policies and programs in one major U.S. city – Philadelphia, this edition explores a diverse set of local innovations, including:
- Discussing collective impact approaches to fundraising, grantmaking and programming to support immigrants
- Promoting economic development through integration of skilled immigrant workers and financial services
- Creating private and voluntary sector partnerships to expand networks of support for refugee community integration
- Developing coalitions to promote civic engagement among new Americans
- Harnessing the collective power of volunteer medical providers to provide community-based health care
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