The American Place at Hartford Public Library (HPL), received a two-year, $225,000 grant by United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). HPL is the only library and the only Connecticut recipient of a USCIS grant in 2019. Only 41 USCIS grants were issued nationwide.
The grants, which are allocated through the USCIS’s Citizenship and Assimilation Grant Program, are designed to assist organizations that provide education and assistance to lawful permanent residents (LPRs) seeking to obtain U.S. citizenship. Since 2009, the USCIS program has assisted an estimated 245,000 legal permanent residents prepare for citizenship.
“We are very proud that the USCIS will once again provide substantial financial assistance to the citizenship preparation program at The American Place,” said HPL CEO Bridget Quinn-Carey. “The application process for these grants is quite rigorous, placing high emphasis on past performance. The American Place at HPL has been serving the region’s immigrant and refugee community for nearly two decades, and is a proven leader in this important work.”
The American Place at Hartford Public Library was formed in 2000 as a program dedicated to welcoming and assisting a large influx of refugees into the Greater Hartford area. Due to its success, it was made a permanent division of the library in 2005. Since then, The American Place has been recognized locally and nationally for its efforts and achievements.
According to a recent U.S. Census Survey, Connecticut has the 12th highest percentage of foreign-born residents in the nation, with the highest concentration in the Greater Hartford area. The American Place’s citizenship preparation program is constantly evolving to better meet the needs of those it serves. Weekend and evening classes are extremely beneficial to those who work during the week. As transportation is often an issue for many newcomers, classes are held at the Downtown Library, which is located at the hub of the region’s mass transit system. The American Place’s efforts also extend beyond the classroom. On-staff attorneys are available to provide free legal advice and counsel. Clients are connected to job training and employment opportunities, cultural and charitable resources, government services and other resources.
ABOUT HARTFORD PUBLIC LIBRARY
Now celebrating its 126th year, Hartford Public Library remains at the forefront of redefining the urban library experience in the 21st Century. With seven locations throughout the city, the library provides education, intellectual enrichment and cultural development for thousands of children, youth and adults every year. Hartford Public Library has also gained local and national recognition for its wide range of new initiatives and partnerships designed to meet the needs of a diverse and dynamic city and region, including immigration services, employment assistance and youth leadership training. Please visit www.hplct.org.