MINNEAPOLIS (Sept. 1, 2016) — U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced today the award of nearly $10 million in grants under two funding opportunities to 46 organizations that will help permanent residents prepare and apply for U.S. citizenship.
Located in 21 states, organizations will receive federal funding to support citizenship preparation services for permanent residents through September 2018.
Of the $10 million, a grant of $250,000 has been awarded to Mid-Minnesota Legal Assistance. Mid-Minnesota Legal Assistance (MMLA) has been providing immigration services since 2001. MMLA was first awarded a USCIS grant in FY 2014. MMLA will partner with Minneapolis Public Schools to expand citizenship instruction and naturalization application services. The program will serve permanent residents originating from Somalia, Ethiopia, Mexico, Liberia, and countries from Southeast Asia. With USCIS FY 2016 funding, MMLA and MPS will provide citizenship instruction to 256 permanent residents and naturalization application services to 225 permanent residents.
This is the eighth year USCIS has awarded competitive grant funding to organizations to support citizenship preparation efforts. Since the program began in October 2009, USCIS has awarded a total of $63 million through 308 grants to immigrant-serving organizations in 37 states and the District of Columbia. To date, the USCIS Citizenship and Integration Grant Program has helped more than 147,000 permanent residents prepare for citizenship. Through Sept. 30, 2018, USCIS anticipates that an additional 37,000 permanent residents will receive citizenship preparation services as a result of the grant program.
The Citizenship and Integration Grant Program is a major part of USCIS’ efforts to support effective citizenship preparation services and provide information to immigrants and public or private non-profit organizations. Other efforts include the Citizenship Resource Center, a Web resource that provides learning materials to help permanent residents prepare for the naturalization process, and USCIS’ partnerships with federal and municipal agencies that raise awareness of the rights, responsibilities and importance of U.S. citizenship among the estimated 8.8 million permanent residents nationwide eligible to apply for naturalization.
For additional information on the Citizenship and Integration Grant Program, please visit www.uscis.gov/grants.