Community Organizing & Civic Engagement
immigrant Rights project
Hana Center is one of the few Asian American organizations in greater Chicago that organizes and empowers community members to advocate for immigrant rights. As almost a fifth of the population is undocumented, Korean Americans provide a strong and steady voice at the municipal, state and federal levels regarding the importance of Comprehensive Immigration Reform for all immigrants, including undocumented youth and adults.
Current campaigns include fighting for inclusion of undocumented immigrants in health care, implementation of expanded DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival) and DAPA (Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents), and language access. Hana Center also anchors the Asian American and Arab American Collaboration for Deferred Actions (A4CDA) to coordinate outreach, collect stories, share and document best practices, and develop common tools among others.
Understanding that civic participation and civic engagement is fundamental to larger movement building work, Hana Center integrates civic engagement work into all aspects of the organization’s programs year-round. Additionally, Hana Center works closely with Chicago Board of Elections and Cook County Clerk’s Office to combat voter suppression and increase immigrant voter access.
Hana Center strongly believes in the importance and power of coalition work. Hana Center is the Chicago affiliate of the National Korean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC). It is a member of the Illinois Coalition of Immigrant & Refugee Rights (ICIRR), Advancing Justice-Chicago’s PAVE Collaboration, the Korean American Human Service Providers Council, Illinois is Our Home, Responsible Budget Coalition and works with a myriad of other partners including community-based organizations, government agencies, small businesses, religious institutions and foundations.