Millions of children in America live with unauthorized immigrant parents.  Action – both covert and overt – against immigrants affects these families’ health, mental health, and access to education, housing, and food security.

How have recent immigration policy changes affected funder strategies?

Starting in late April 2018, the Roundatable will launch its conversation on the impact of immigration action on children and families:

  • Interviews with key field leaders
  • Discussions with state-based advocates
  • Interviews with funders
  • Live funder strategy discussions
  • Links to partner webinars and resources
Family and Children Roundtable

The Roundtable’s immigration work is done in partnership with:


An Overview of Immigration, Children, and Policy in the US – Q&A with MPI

With contributions from Randy Capps. Approximately how many children in the US have at least one parent who is an unauthorized immigrant? Are there states or regions more heavily impacted by this? Key facts: About one quarter of all children in the US have an immigrant parent. That’s 18 million children. Of these children, 5.1…

Immigration, the Safety Net, and Public Charge – Q&A with NILC

With contributions from Gabrielle Lessard & Jenny Rejeske, What are the public charge rules? Why do the potential public charge rule changes matter for immigrant families? A public charge is a person who is dependent on the government for material and financial support. Whether a person is likely to become a public charge is assessed…

Immigration and Family Preparedness – Q&A with Southern Poverty Law Center

With contributions from Willemijn Keizer. Family preparedness for immigrant families includes gathering necessary documentation, appointing a caregiver or guardian for your children, and deciding where you would like your children to live in case of your deportation. These decisions are heartbreakingly difficult for families. While necessary, they must be distressing for parents, guardians, and children.…

Immigration and Child Welfare — Q&A with CICW

With contributions from Megan Finno-Velasquez. CICW Q&AHow do children in immigrant families enter the child welfare system? There are two main pathways to entry into the child welfare system: 1) direct, when immigration enforcement (i.e., parent detention, deportation) causes family separation, leaving no one to care for the children, and 2) indirect, when stressors and pressures…

Immigration Action Impact on Young Children — Q&A with CLASP

With contributions from Wendy Cervantes, Hannah Matthews, and Rebecca Ullrich Q&A with CLASPWhy does the impact of immigration policies on young children matter? Why does it matter for child care and early education providers? CLASP decided to conduct this research at the beginning of 2017, after the Trump Administration announced a series of executive orders that…

Funder Conversations

Partner Event: COVID-19 Pandemic Impact on Immigrant Families and Communities: Recommendations for Philanthropic Action

GCIR webinar Wednesday, April 15 * 1:00 – 2:30 pm EST Join GCIR to learn from leaders in the immigrant rights movement on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic about how philanthropy must significantly increase grantmaking dollars, shift grantmaking practices, embrace risk, and assert leadership to meet the challenges of this moment. GCIR’s funding recommendations…

Upcoming events of interest

If you are interested in the intersection of immigration and child welfare, check out: A Threat to Health & Well-Being: Public Charge’s Expected Impact and How Philanthropy Can Respond GCIR webinar September 26, 2019 If you are curious about innovative funding for policy advocacy, check out: Philanthropy’s New Playbook for Policy Advocacy Urban Institute event…

GCIR Funders’ Working Group on Immigrant Trauma, Belonging, and Well-Being

GCIR is launching a new Funders’ Working Group on Immigrant Trauma, Belonging, and Well-Being. The ongoing family separation and detention crisis has raised awareness of the detrimental consequence of trauma on immigrant families. This current crisis is happening in the broader context of ongoing threats of enforcement against families in our communities and polarizing rhetoric,…

Immigration Strategy Discussion

Are you interested in learning more about how your foundation can use its expertise to enter the immigration space? Are you seeking ways to communicate differently with your peers and colleagues about the effects of immigration policy today? Do you wonder how to better align your strategies across your issue areas? Our first strategy discussion…

Funder Q&A with Robert Shull of the Public Welfare Foundation

Bob Shull Robert Shull, Program Director for Workers’ Rights, Public Welfare Foundation The Public Welfare Foundation supports efforts to advance justice and opportunity for people in need. These efforts honor the Foundation’s core values of racial equity, economic well-being and fundamental fairness for all. The Foundation looks for strategic points where its funds can make…

Supporting Immigrant Families in a Shifting Policy Landscape – An EITC Funders Network Q&A with Laura Speer, The Annie E. Casey Foundation

Laura Speer is the Associate Director of Policy Reform and Advocacy for The Annie E. Casey Foundation. She recently talked with the EITC Funders Network about the proposed public charge rule changes, how they affect immigrant families, and what funders can do. Read this brief Q&A for more information on why public charge is a…

Funder Q&A with Dawn Oliver Wiand, Iowa Women’s Foundation

Dawn Oliver Wiand, Executive Director, Iowa Women’s Foundation The Iowa Women’s Foundation serves women and girls throughout the state with a mix of grantmaking, advocacy, education, and collaboration. These efforts provide pathways to economic self-sufficiency for women and girls in Iowa. Dawn Oliver Wiand is the Executive Director of the Iowa Women’s Foundation. We chatted…

Advancing the Well-being of Immigrant Families at the State Level [VIDEO!]

Rich Huddelston of Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families and Mayra Alvarez of The Children’s Partnership (CA) discuss the issues facing immigrant families in their respective states, what polices they have been advancing to help support and protect immigrant families, and suggestions for charitable foundations.  

Funder Q&A with Gary Bass, The Bauman Foundation

Gary Bass, Executive Director, The Bauman Foundation The Bauman Foundation works to preserve a true democratic society by working in the areas of economic justice, federal tax policy, income inequality, and government and corporate accountability. Bauman’s grants encourage open government and civic participation in the political process. Gary Bass is the Executive Director of The…

What Can Philanthropy Do? [VIDEO!]

Released in 2018, GCIR, GIST and ECFC released a brief that highlights strategies funders can use to advance the health and well-being of immigrant families in a changing policy landscape. This 20 minute video provides an opportunity to get a primer on funder strategies.  

Healthy Babies, Successful Families – GCIR Partner Webinar

Join GCIR to learn about ways to help immigrant families access the health, nutrition, and safety services necessary for infants to thrive. The first six years of life are critical for brain development and immigrant families face unique challenges. Learn more here and join us on Thursday, May 10 at 2:00 eastern for an in-depth…

A Guide to the New Public Charge Rules – GCIR Partner Webinar

Recently proposed new public charge rules could block families from obtaining visas or permanent residency status because they use health and social services benefits for their eligible children. Learn more about these proposed rule changes and what funders can do in response. Learn more here and join us on Thursday, April 19 at 4:00 eastern…

Related News & Updates

September 2019 Immigration Resources Update

What you need to know about public charge GCIR’s brief on what philanthropy can do to protect immigrant families Urban Institute report on how the public charge rule change affects safety net access NILC and CLASP came together to create a hub for information on public charge advocacy What you need to know about immigrant…

Keeping Immigrant Families Safe in Early Childhood Programs – CLASP

There are areas in which immigration enforcement activities are limited, including early childhood centers! To learn more about the sensitive locations policies and what they mean for immigrant families, check out this blog post from CLASP.

Middle-Skill Credentials & Immigrant Workers – National Skills Coalition

The National Skills Coalition is releasing a series of state-focused reports on the role immigrants play in the workforce. Namely, immigrants are filling much-needed middle-skill roles. The National Skills Coalition now has reports for Arkansas, Arizona, California, Indiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Texas, and Washington! See here to learn more about the most recent set…

Administration Actions Against Immigrant Families Harming Children Through Increased Fear, Loss of Needed Assistance – Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities released this review of research on the ways current immigration policy and rhetoric affect children both in the short- and long-term. The research highlights increased fear and anxiety, which leads to reduction in benefits due to distrust of government entities and social isolation. Toxic stress affects children’s mental…

What Can Philanthropy Do? Coming together for children in immigrant families in a changing policy landscape

GCIR, GIST, and ECFC developed this series of recommendations for ways funders can address the specific and unique challenges faced by immigrant families. Suggested strategies include capacity building, policy advocacy, narrative and strategic communications, and research.

Forgoing Food Assistance Out of Fear: Changes to “public charge” rule may put 500,000 more US citizen children at risk of moving into poverty

This research brief, prepared by the Center on Poverty & Social Policy at Columbia University, examines the effect of the proposed public charge rule changes on child poverty rates.

Public Charge Factsheet – NILC

In early 2018, the US State Department issued a revision to its Foreign Affairs Manual, redefining public charge. The US Citizenship and Immigration Services is seeking a rule change which will require official posting with the OMB and a period for public comment. According to these new rules, any individual seeking to become a lawful…

Our Children’s Fear: Immigration policy’s effects on young children – CLASP

CLASP researchers talked with parents and early care and education providers in six states with high immigrant populations about the impact of recent immigration policies on young children. Their findings, outlined in this report, show that America’s youngest children are fearful; face increased isolation; have reduced access to early education, healthcare, and nutrition; and are…

Noncitizen Youth in the Juvenile Justice System: 2018 update – The Annie E. Casey Foundation

All youth in the detention deserve safe and fair treatment. Noncitizen youth in the juvenile justice system face particular challenges. This report from The Annie E. Casey Foundation provides information on best practice policies and procedures.

Implications of Immigration Enforcement Activities for the Well-Being of Children in Immigrant Families: A review of the literature – Migration Policy Institute

Immigration enforcement activities have changed drastically over the past two decades with more immigration enforcement occurring in the country as opposed to primarily at the borders. These activities impact millions of families. This comprehensive report details the impacts of detention and deportation on children in immigrant families. The Migration Policy Institute and the Urban Institute…

A Profile of U.S. Children with Unauthorized Immigrant Parents – Migration Policy Institute

This fact sheet from the Migration Policy Institute outlines the disadvantages children in immigrant families face, including access to early education, limited English proficiency, poverty, and less socioeconomic progress than peers. The fact sheet also provides background data on the number and characteristics of children in immigrant families.

Immigrant Families in America Today: How fear and toxic stress are affecting daily life, well-being, and health – GCIR Partner Webinar

Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees (GCIR) presented a webinar on health in immigrant families as they face rapidly changing immigration policies today. Check out GCIR’s resources on immigration and health here!