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Unaccompanied Immigrant Children: Understanding the Crisis

Monday, August 25, 2014
9:00am - 11:00am PDT
Joan Palevsky Center, California Community Foundation
281 S. Figueroa St., Suite 100, Los Angeles, CA 90012
Members: $0.00
Non-Members: $100.00
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The current humanitarian crisis of unaccompanied immigrant children crossing the US border has sparked intense interest and concern.

There is widespread confusion about this growing population and how funders can respond to the influx and rapidly changing circumstances.

Join us for a briefing on this humanitarian crisis—presented in partnership with California Community Foundation, The California Endowment, The California Wellness Foundation, The Ralph M. Parsons Foundation, and Weingart Foundation—to learn more about who these children and their families are and what local service providers are seeing on the ground.

Daranee Petsod, Executive Director of Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees, will moderate a panel of experts who will share the latest on coordinated efforts to address short and long term needs, including legal services, basic needs, and health services:

Following the panel, a funder discussion with our program partners will explore ways that philanthropy can help build an infrastructure needed to prepare for children and families being released to the Southern California region. 

SCG is committed to addressing emerging policy issues of concern to philanthropy in Southern California and will work to provide pertinent information for our members and community stakeholders about this critical issue.

This program is sponsored by the California Community Foundation and The California Endowment.





Speaker Biographies

Martha Arévalo
Executive Director, Central American Resource Center

Martha Arévalo is Executive Director for the Central American Resource Center (CARECEN). In this role, she is responsible for operations, fundraising, program development and strategic communications.  Prior to her appointment, Arévalo chaired the Board of Directors for the organization. She specializes in immigrant advocacy work, community outreach and Latino strategic communications. Arévalo has more than 17 years of public relations experience and specializes in media relations, community outreach and Latino strategic communications. She has extensive experience in the areas of social marketing, public education, immigration, education, civic participation, public policy and community organizing. Arévalo graduated from the School of Public Policy at UCLA with an M.A. in urban planning.

Dr. Linda Lopez
Chief of the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs, City of Los Angeles

Dr. Linda Lopez was appointed by Mayor Eric Garcetti as the new Chief of the Office of Immigrant Affairs. The Office will serve many functions for immigrants in the city, including coordination of city services and departments; convening with organizations and agencies around immigration integration issues; and tracking immigration policy and implementation at the federal, state, and local levels. Prior to her appointment, Dr. Lopez was an Associate Dean for Diversity and Strategic Initiatives at USC’s Dornsife College and a Program Officer at the National Science Foundation in Washington DC. She is an expert in public policy and received a Ph.D. in Political Science from USC. Dr. Lopez has published in several peer-reviewed journals on public policy issues affecting racial and ethnic communities. Born in Los Angeles, she is a second-generation Angelena whose parents immigrated to LA from Ecuador.

Sonia Nazario
Author, Enrique’s Journey

Sonia Nazario has spent more than 20 years reporting and writing about social issues, most recently as a projects reporter for the Los Angeles Times. She has won numerous national journalism and book awards tackling some of this country’s most intractable issues: hunger, drug addiction and immigration. In 2003, her story of a Honduran boy’s struggle to find his mother in the U.S., entitled “Enrique’s Journey,” won more than a dozen awards, among them the Pulitzer Prize for feature writing, the George Polk Award for International Reporting, the Grand Prize of the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award, and the National Assn. of Hispanic Journalists Guillermo Martinez-Marquez Award for Overall Excellence. Expanded into a book, Enrique’s Journey became a national bestseller, won three book awards, and became required reading for incoming freshman at 62 colleges and scores of high schools across the U.S. In 1998, Nazario was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for a series on children of drug addicted parents. And in 1994, she won a George Polk Award for Local Reporting for a series about hunger among schoolchildren in California. Nazario, who grew up in Kansas and in Argentina, has been named among the most influential Latinos by Hispanic Business Magazine and a “trendsetter” by Hispanic Magazine. In 2012 Columbia Journalism Review named Nazario among "40 women who changed the media business in the past 40 years.“ She is now at work on her second book.

Daranee Petsod
Executive Director of Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees

Daranee Petsod, Executive Director of Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees, has worked on immigrant-related issues for more than 25 years. Prior to joining GCIR in 1998, she held leadership positions at the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights and was a program officer at the Field Foundation of Illinois, Inc. and the Sophia Fund. She has served on the boards of the Donors Forum and the Heartland Alliance, both in Chicago, and the Asian American Justice Center in Washington, D.C. Ms. Petsod earned an M.A. in social policy from the University of Chicago.

Caitlin Sanderson
Program Director, Esperanza Immigrant Rights Project

Caitlin Sanderson has been Esperanza’s Program Director since May 2011. Under her leadership, the Project has grown into the largest immigration nonprofit legal service provider in the State of California focusing on detention and removal defense. Prior to coming to Esperanza, Sanderson was an Attorney Advisor to the Department of Justice at the Immigration Court that used to be located on the Mira Loma Detention Facility in Lancaster, Ca. Sanderson was also an Equal Justice Works Fellow at Community Refugee and Immigration Services (CRIS) in Columbus, Ohio where she worked with immigrant communities from East Africa. Sanderson has lived and worked in six countries on three continents, including Egypt, Israel/Palestine, Kosovo, and Italy. She is a 2007 graduate of Georgetown University, where she left with a J.D., a Masters in Arab Studies, and a Certificate in Refugee and Humanitarian Emergencies. She speaks – to varying abilities – Arabic, Spanish, Italian and Dutch.

SCG members: register online.
Eligible non-members: If you already have an SCG account, log in to register. If you do not have an account yet, contact [email protected].

SCG members: no cost to attend
Eligible non-members: $100

Who May Attend:
Open to grantmakers