WASHINGTON— U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services awarded nearly $10 million in grants to 41 organizations in 24 states to help prepare lawful permanent residents (LPRs) for naturalization.
The fiscal year 2019 grants, which run through September 2021, promote prospective citizens’ assimilation into American civic life by funding educational programs designed to increase their knowledge of English, U.S. history and civics.
“Our country welcomes legal immigrants from all over the world who come to the United States, positively contribute to our society and engage in American civic life,” said USCIS Acting Director Ken Cuccinelli. “Immigrants who assimilate, embrace our Constitution, understand our history, and abide by our laws add to the vitality and strength of this great nation. Through this grant program, USCIS continues to support efforts to prepare immigrants to become fully vested U.S. citizens.”
USCIS awarded the grants through the Citizenship Instruction and Naturalization Application Services grant opportunity, which supports organizations that provide citizenship instruction and naturalization application assistance to LPRs. Organizations that receive grants under this funding opportunity can only use grant funds to provide services to immigrants who have been lawfully admitted to the U.S. for permanent residence.
In making final award decisions, USCIS considered grantee’s past performance, when applicable. In addition, all funded grant recipients must enroll in E-Verify as a regular employer within 30 days of receiving the award and remain E-Verify participants in good standing throughout the entire period of grant performance. Funded grant recipients must verify all new hires at hiring locations performing work on a program or activity that is funded in whole or in part under the grant.
The Citizenship and Assimilation Grant Program has awarded approximately $92 million through 434 competitive grants to immigrant-serving organizations in 39 states and the District of Columbia since it began in 2009. Now in its 11th year, the program has helped more than 245,000 LPRs prepare for citizenship.
The Citizenship and Assimilation Grant Program is a major part of the agency’s efforts to support effective citizenship preparation services and to provide information on naturalization to immigrants and nonprofit organizations. USCIS maintains the Citizenship Resource Center, an online hub that provides educational materials and resources to help LPRs prepare for the naturalization process. USCIS also partners with federal, state and local agencies to raise awareness of the rights, responsibilities and importance of U.S. citizenship among the estimated 8.9 million LPRs nationwide who are eligible to apply for naturalization.
For additional information on the Citizenship and Assimilation Grant Program, please visit uscis.gov/grants.