In 2018, Social Justice Fund for Ventura County (SJFVC) has awarded $27,500 to six local organizations working on the critical issues of immigration while inspiring and educating young leaders to become leaders and advocates. Both east and west county organizations have aggressively stepped forward on this issue, reacting to our volatile political climate regarding needs in Ventura County. SJFVC had a large and diverse group of organizations (19) that submitted letters of interest to help in their respective efforts on immigration issues.
Cabrillo Economic Development Corporation (CEDC) $4,000
Workshops, to partner with the Mexican Consulate in Oxnard to set up mobile one-stop-shops in Santa Paula and Fillmore, and partner with La Hermandad to deliver two 10-week citizenship classes.
Ventura County Clergy & Laity United for Economic Justice (CLUE) $4,500
Building upon its successes at Thousand Oaks High School, where undocumented students gather from Westlake and Newbury Park high schools (Thousand Oaks) for skill-building trainings, CLUE has proposed expanding the program to new schools in Santa Paula, Ojai, Moorpark, Oxnard, and Ventura. The program will assist schools in organizing 12-15 knowledge and skill-building training sessions for club members.
Mixteco Indigena Community Organizing Project (MICOP) $5,500
MICOP will conduct Training of Trainer presentations for Know Your Rights, U-Visa, Asylum, Permanent Resident, T-Visa, US Citizenship, DACA, and other programs. Additionally, MICOP has proposed compiling a one-page list of immigration resources in Ventura County, creating a safe space for indigenous immigrant youth to share their stories, and hosting a weekly radio talk show and podcast.
Westminster Free Clinic (WFC) $6,000
WFC provides free medical care to the uninsured and working poor, regardless of immigration status. Additionally, the WFC serves as an advocate and safe resource for Know Your Rights information, including access to a free bi-lingual immigration lawyer, and socio-emotional support and stress management. Annually, WFC offers free medical, dental, vision, mental health and legal services to over 8,000 low-income, uninsured individuals. Beyond improved access to care, the WFC provides leadership and youth development opportunities to high school students through trainings and hands-on experience. This program, known as Student Advocates Leading Uplifting Decisions or SALUD, will seek to train parents to be advocates for their children in schools, raise awareness about A-G requirements and student rights, train teachers and school administrators on challenges faced by low-income, first generation Latino students, distribute Know Your Rights information and conduct training sessions on the material.
California State University Channel Islands (CSUCI) $3,000
The goals of CSUCI’s grant are twofold: First, to educate the Ventura County community about immigration laws and policies. Students will gather and compile both quantitative and qualitative data on non-US citizens who are detained by Ventura County Sheriff and ICE officials. The students will then design an online website for immigration resources in Ventura County to disseminate information to local and national immigrant advocacy groups, partnering with local community organizations to raise awareness. The second goal of the grant is to transform these students into the next generation of immigrant right activists by developing a toolkit and training students to conduct Know Your Rights and Dream Act workshops.
California Lutheran University (CLU) $4,500
CLU was designated a Hispanic-Serving Institution in 2016, Latino students represent 31% of the undergraduate population. This honor is a part of the University’s mission of educating leaders for a global society who are confident in their identity, vocation, and mission. As a part of that mission, CLU has proposed creating program to train eight Immigrant Empowerment Advocates. This for-credit curriculum will provide 16 hours of training for CLU students who are residents of Ventura County in: community organizing, needs assessment, community mapping, fundraising, event planning, and cross-cultural network building. The same students will then supervise the planning and execution of four projects addressing high-need areas throughout Ventura County.