Immigrants and refugees have long been a part of our state and region, with one in five state residents being foreign-born. Immigrants and refugees in Florida come from every global region, with most born in Latin America (including the Caribbean), followed by people from Asia and Europe. The human, social, and economic capital they bring contributes to our state’s vitality.
At the same time, immigrant and refugee communities in Southwest Florida continue to recover from the disastrous impact of Hurricane Irma in September 2017. Recent changes in federal immigration law and policies have made recovery and life in general more challenging and complex for noncitizens.
With funding from The Florida Bar Foundation and national funders, the 2019 Immigration Program Grant season opens with a call for projects and programs for services (both established and new) designed to increase the quality of life in sustainable and equitable ways for immigrants and refugees in Southwest Florida. Projects and programs will support equity and empowerment in our region.
The Southwest Florida Community Foundation seeks projects and programs from 501(c)(3) organizations that assist immigrants and refugees in Southwest Florida. Projects and programs must provide to immigrants and/or refugees in Southwest Florida: legal services OR legal services and at least one of the three following: community outreach and education, legal services capacity building and/or technical assistance capacity building, and/or advocacy and organizing, described below.
Collaborations and partnerships enhance and strengthen projects, programs, and relationships, increase efficiency, and result in cost savings. In the event your organization does not meet one or more of the requirements of this grant, we encourage your organization to partner with one or more organizations that meet the requirements. As just one example, if your organization does not provide immigration legal services in Southwest Florida, but provides immigration community outreach and education in our region, your organization may partner with an organization that provides immigration legal services in Southwest Florida. Only one proposal per collaborative would be submitted, but more than one idea can be submitted by an organization. Should you submit a collaborative proposal, please include a complete list of all partner organizations, main contact person for each organization, roles, responsibilities, and allocation of resources- including financial resources from this grant request. While collaborative proposals are welcomed to create impact, they are not required.
You may request up to $100,000 for your proposed project or program. The Immigration Program funds may vary in amount and may be less than $100,000. This grant funding is for one year. We do not yet know whether we will have grant funding for 2020.
Projects or programs will be considered based on the following priorities:
Below is a description of this year’s Immigration Program process.
Requests for proposals (RFP) is open October 1, 2018 through October 26, 2018. We will announce awards in December 2018 and disseminate funding in January 2019. General elements of a well-written RFP are:
Note: The RFP is a series of questions asked through our online application portal. Supplemental materials beyond the RFP requirements will not be reviewed, unless specifically requested.
Click here to view application questions.
We will convene a question and answer session with organizations serving immigrants and/or refugees in Southwest Florida on October 5, 2018, from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m., facilitated by Alice Cottingham, a seasoned consultant for immigration nonprofits and philanthropy. At the session, you will also learn more about the funding, what types of immigration services organizations are currently providing, and the immigration services learning community we hope to establish. Organizations are strongly encouraged to attend this meeting. Organizations that do not attend this meeting may still apply for the Immigrant Program Grant. If you plan to attend the October 5, 2018 meeting, please RVSP to Nirupa Netram, Immigration Program Officer, [email protected], no later than September 28, 2018.
Should your proposal advance to the next round, you will be invited to participate in the Compassionate Shark Tank: Immigration Program Grant Pitch Day on December 5, 2018. Shark tank participants have 3 minutes to share their idea with the shark tank panel. The shark tank panel has 10 minutes to ask you questions about your project or program idea. The shark tank panel will measure your effectiveness by your ability to address each of the RFP elements in your presentation, your responses during the question and answer session, and your responses to any additional questions from the panel.
You may be invited to submit a request for more information (RFMI). Should we need more information, we will contact you. The RFMI is a set of questions that require elaboration on specific aspects of the proposed project or program.
The grant period is January 1, 2019 through December 31, 2019. The Southwest Florida Community Foundation will require grantees to submit mid-term and final reports and attend quarterly meetings in 2019, which will be open to non-grantees.
We will announce awards in December 2018 and disperse funds in January 2019.
Please email Nirupa Netram, Immigration Program Officer, [email protected] or call 239-274-5900.