These are the 3 big barriers for immigrants seeking citizenship - Generocity Philly

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Nov. 10, 2017 8:40 am

These are the 3 big barriers for immigrants seeking citizenship

Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians' Katherine Prieto-Celis and Manuel Portillo share how the Immigrant Leadership Institute is helping participants gain the knowledge and skills needed to break them down.

Katherine Prieto-Celis of the Immigrant Leadership Institute.

(Screenshot via YouTube)

Full disclosure: Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians has underwritten a Generocity series on its Immigrant Leadership Institute. This story is not a part of that series.

Around the Corner” is a PhillyCAM show that offers local social impact leaders the opportunity to share what impact their work is having on the Philadelphia area.


What are the barriers to American citizenship?

For many, it’s cost, information and trust.

Immigrant Leadership Institute wants to break down those barriers: Part of Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians’ Citizenship in Action program, the institute trains new immigrants in asset mapping, naturalization and media relations (hi!), among other leadership skills.

But for recent Colombian immigrant Katherine Prieto-Celis, who is part of the institute’s first cohort, its focus on community building is just as important — now, and for her future work.

“We are generating bonds and a fraternal relationship with the people who are in the program,” she said. “That’s really important for the immigrants who come to this country, because sometimes we leave our country and we start all over again in the other country, and we need that support system here. Because of that, there’s a lot of passion to help other people.”

Learn more about the Immigrant Leadership Institute in Prieto-Celis and Manuel Portillo’s “Around the Corner” interview below.

Watch on YouTube

PhillyCAM is Comcast channel 66/966 HD/967 and Verizon FIOS channel 29/30 in Philadelphia.

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Julie Zeglen

Julie Zeglen is the editor of Generocity. Previous to joining the Technically Media team, she served as managing editor of Star Community Newsweekly, a hyperlocal newspaper focused on Philadelphia’s River Wards. The Temple alumna lives in West Philly.

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