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Immigrant Engagement Stories


Learn how local governments are successfully engaging immigrant communities.


Case Story

Community Dialogues Help Immigrants And Longer-Term Residents Bridge The Cultural Gap

Through its new Immigrant Engagement Project, the Peninsula Conflict Resolution Center (PCRC) is creating opportunities for dialogue that allow recent immigrants and long-term residents of San Mateo County to get to know each other better. These dialogues will also help identify shared interests and community concerns about public services including education, community development, health and safety.

Case Story

C.A.R.O.N. – Community Alliance to Revitalize Our Neighborhood: Violence Prevention by Engaging Youth and Immigrant Families

C.A.R.O.N. (Community Alliance to Revitalize Our Neighborhood), an initiative of the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office, works to create strong and healthy immigrant families that are integrated into their community.

Case Story

Santa Clara County Supports Coordinated Immigrant Integration and Engagement Effort

To better support the integration of immigrants into the community, Santa Clara County established IRIS – Immigrant Relations and Integration Services. Housed in the County Office of Human Relations, IRIS staff members work on projects that promote positive immigrant relations and integration.

Case Story

Cooking Up New Ways to Reach Residents

In 2007, Rancho Cordova Council Member Ken Cooley’s community was filled with homes on the brink of mortgage meltdown. Observing a startling number of for-sale signs throughout Rancho Cordova neighborhoods, Cooley reflected that when people lose their homes it impacts the entire community.

Case Story

Reaching out to Lodi’s Pakistani-American Community

The City of Lodi, California is home to a diverse population of 65,000 people, including many Latino and Pakistani immigrants and their families. Pakistani people began immigrating to the area in the 1920s to work on nearby farms, and today about 5 percent of residents are Pakistani. Until recent years, the Lodi Pakistani community mostly remained relatively isolated. When the FBI announced that they had discovered a terrorist cell in Lodi in June of 2005, the resulting flurry of media attention and threats spurred city officials to work to establish lines of communication with this part of the community.

Case Story

Fremont’s Community Ambassadors Program Reaches Out to Immigrant Seniors

Starting in 2000, the City of Fremont partnered with local ethnic community organizations to engage their diverse residents in focus groups. These focus groups were held in 8 languages in order to include the entire community. One goal that surfaced from these conversations was to improve the capacity of the community to serve older adults and to make services accessible to older adults.Residents felt this was especially important for older adults who were not native English speakers and who often had trouble understanding complex government systems like how to apply for citizenship or Social Security.

Case Story

Montgomery County, Maryland: Doing More with Less on Language Access
Migration Policy Institute, Amy Qi

Like many communities in California, Montgomery County, Maryland ‘s foreign-born population has grown substantially over the last decade.  To meet the growing needs of the limited English proficient (LEP) clients the county serves, its used cost-conscious strategies as part of its language access framework, to achieve accountability, awareness, and cost-effectiveness in language access during challenging fiscal times.

Case Story

Provo, Utah: Utah Community Takes a Long and Broad View of Immigration

In Provo, residents focused on the local implications of the national debate on immigration. They met for an interactive Immigration Dialogue to learn more about how immigration has affected America past, present and future.

Case Story

Portland, Oregon: Portland Example of Immigrant Civic Engagement – Diversity and Civic Leadership Program

Portland, Oregon’s Office of Neighborhood Involvement has developed several programs intended to expand opportunities for civic involvement among underrepresented communities.

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