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July 5, 2020
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Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria $200k grant to Secure Families Fund

February 14, 2020

Collaborative provides pro bono legal and social service support for asylum applicants, “Dreamers” and others who are entitled to legal relief

The Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria (FIGR or Graton Rancheria) announced a contribution of $200,0000 to the Sonoma County Secure Families Fund. The year-old Collaborative provides pro bono legal and social service support for asylum applicants, DACA “Dreamers” and others who are entitled to legal relief.

“The Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria has supported Secure Families Fund in the past and we’re happy to double our efforts this year,” said Graton Rancheria Tribal Chairman, Greg Sarris. “Supporting the Latino community is extremely important to us and we want to ensure that all Latinos – documented and undocumented – have access to lawyers and legal advice.”

Graton Rancheria made a $100,000 donation to launch the Sonoma County Secure Families Collaborative in late 2018. Since then, the Collaborative partners, including VIDAS Legal Services as well as the University of San Francisco Law School’s Immigration and Deportation Clinic and Catholic Charities, have worked to provide free legal immigration services to local immigrant families across Sonoma County.

“In 2019, the Collaborative demonstrated the power of this new community institution – it encouraged new and creative collaborations, focused service provision on those most vulnerable and brought resources and expertise from the larger Bay Area,” said Margaret Flores McCabe, executive director for VIDAS Legal Services, the lead agency on the Sonoma County Secure Families Collaborative. “In year one, we served more than 100 Sonoma County families. In year two, with this generous contribution from Graton Rancheria, we’ll expand support to our clients outside the courtroom via culturally appropriate mental health and other needed social services.”

In 2020, the Collaborative’s capacity will expand to take on new cases, with a specific focus on the Dreamers through a partnership with Santa Rosa Junior College. The Collaborative will also include Humanidad Therapy & Education Services, providing clients with a range of important trauma-informed mental health support, as well as other social services.

“Federal immigration policy has worked to systematically separate families and has struck fear in the heart of our community. As community leaders, we see and feel the impact this anxiety adds to those already struggling with increased housing prices, fire impacts and economic challenges,” said Susan Gorin, District 1 Supervisor for Sonoma County. “We’re proud to join Graton Rancheria to support this powerful public-private partnership, taking a stand in support of our immigrant communities to say: ‘Not in our community; not in Sonoma County.’”

About the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria

Graton Rancheria is a federally recognized tribe comprised of Coast Miwok and Southern Pomo Indians. For more information, please visitwww.gratonrancheria.com.  

About Sonoma County Secure Families Collective

The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors established the Sonoma County Secure Families Collaborative to meet the needs of our immigrant community’s increased challenges due to the changes in federal immigration policy and the North Bay wildfires. The Collaborative’s purpose is to increase legal capacity for immigrants in Sonoma County and to keep immigrant families together, safe and thriving.

The Sonoma County Secure Families Fund is a trustee-advised fund of the Community Foundation of Sonoma County. Core partners provide critical services our immigrant neighbors need to maintain family unity and community togetherness to ensure sociocultural and economic vitality. The Sonoma County Secure Families Fund partners with Catholic Charities, VIDAS and the USF School of Law Immigration and Deportation Defense Clinic to provide critical services and protect the community’s economic and cultural vitality.