Taking Action on DACA – Our Continued Commitment to Silicon Valley

Sep 21, 2017

The communities where we live, raise our children, play in parks, work, and create memories are more than street addresses and neighborhood names. Communities are a bond. They celebrate connection, and they recognize support — support that manifests in the ways we have each other’s backs and speak up for each other’s needs.

Here in the Silicon Valley community, we all work, play, worship and live. We all belong. As a member of this community, the Sobrato Family Foundation sees the need to speak up: We believe all people in our communities deserve dignity and the opportunity to succeed. We know removing opportunity for DACA* participants goes against our mission and our values. And we recognize the need to speak and act on behalf of the community we serve.

When we learned that President Trump ordered an end to DACA, we reached out to nonprofit partners to hear what this means for you and the Silicon Valley community members you serve. You shared with us your concerns and fears. You inspired us with your solidarity and dedication to stand together as a united community. You demonstrated that you understand and honor the bond of community. The most consistent, tangible need our grantee partners expressed was support for DACA participants to file renewal applications. Responding to community needs, our board unanimously approved two immediate actions.

The Sobrato Family Foundation has created a one-time fund of $150,000 open to current Sobrato grantees for DACA application fee reimbursements. The reimbursement fund is available now and will remain open through October 31, 2017 or earlier, if community members draw the funds more quickly.

In addition, the Sobrato Family Foundation granted $25,000 each to five community organizations equipped to expertly respond to legal demands DACA participants face: Law Foundation of Silicon ValleyLegal Aid Society of San MateoCommunity Legal Services of East Palo AltoSIREN – Services, Immigrant Rights, and Education Network of San Jose, and Catholic Charities of San Jose. This funding allows teams to act flexibly without additional administrative burdens while they triage and address the needs of DACA participants and their families.

Timing is crucial for these grants, as the deadline to file for a DACA renewal is fast approaching, and our grantees have already been working diligently to support people impacted by the announced end of DACA. We recognize and deeply appreciate national funds focused on helping Dreamers, the young people who have been protected by DACA. However, our staff and board members do not want local nonprofit partners and people you serve to feel pressure to compete for national funds. We are upholding the bond of community by making sure you have local resources for this critical work.

The Sobrato Family Foundation will continue to uphold our responsibility to the residents and families we serve as a member of the Silicon Valley community. We will hold ourselves accountable to you and to the role we can and must play as a local philanthropy –– to ensure equity, equality and opportunity for all.

To learn more about this program please contact Jazmin Gonzalez at jgonzalez@sobrato.org

*The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals is a policy that protected immigrants who came into the United States as minors and know no home outside the United States.