Carnegie Corporation’s $5 Million Grant Supports National Initiative to Help Eligible Immigrants Become U.S. Citizens

Grantees in this story

Centennial Grant Continues Andrew Carnegie’s Legacy; Drives Multi-Foundation Partnership.

Carnegie Corporation of New York today announced a $5 million grant to the Immigrant Legal Resource Center to fund “The New Americans Campaign,” a nonpartisan initiative to help more immigrants who are legal permanent residents become U.S. citizens. Read NAC press release.

The grant honors Andrew Carnegie’s deep belief that we owe the vitality, progress, and hope we all have for the future of this nation to the contributions of each and every citizen, including those who have come to the United States as immigrants. In keeping with this legacy, Carnegie Corporation is committed to helping immigrants become integrated into the civic fabric of our nation so that they not only benefit from the rights of citizenship but also bear the responsibilities, as well.

The Corporation, which was founded by Mr. Carnegie in 1911, is one of six national funders collaborating to support the New Americans Campaign—a partnership of more than 80 legal service providers, businesses, faith-based organizations, community leaders, and foundations working to modernize and streamline access to citizenship-support services through innovations including new technology tools to assist applicants and outreach to rural communities. The Campaign launches this week after a pilot phase (funded in part by an earlier Carnegie Corporation grant of $2 million), and will focus on cities with large populations of citizenship-eligible residents.

“Support for this initiative,” said Vartan Gregorian, President of Carnegie Corporation, “represents the foundation’s century-long commitment to strengthening American democracy and advancing the progress of our society. We believe in a nation that transcends its limits, and where people transcend their differences in order to share a common purpose and common ideals. Working towards this goal has always included the efforts of our newest citizens who, like so many of their immigrant ancestors, have grasped the opportunity to share in all aspects of America’s intellectual, social, and political life—contributing to that ‘more perfect union’ celebrated in our Constitution.”

In addition to Carnegie Corporation, the New Americans Campaign consortium of national private foundations includes The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation; Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Fund; Grove Foundation; Open Society Foundations and The JPB Foundation.

In its grantmaking, Carnegie Corporation emphasizes the expansion of citizenship as essential to our nation’s strength.  Citizenship brings significant social, economic, and civic benefits not only to newcomers and their families but also to communities, states, and the country as a whole. To help large numbers of eligible immigrants become U.S. citizens, the foundation is investing in a stronger immigrant integration infrastructure, to include legal services, citizenship application assistance, and English-language instruction. These services are crucial to helping newcomers achieve citizenship, establish a social and economic foothold, and become full, active and contributing members of society.