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A WGVU initiative in partnership with the W.K. Kellogg Foundation using on-air programs and community events to explore issues of inclusion and equity.

Fund to help undocumented immigrants in Kent County is launched

La Lucha Fund logo
La Lucha Fund

There are more than 13,000 undocumented immigrants living in Kent County and none of them are eligible to receive unemployment, emergency food assistance or a stimulus check from the government, according to data from the Gateways for Growth Initiative.

“We know that people who are undocumented don’t have access to a lot of the supports that have been put in place during this COVID-19 crisis. They are not eligible for unemployment. They can’t receive a CARES Act stimulus check and as a result families are struggling.” 

That’s Erika VanDyke, program officer at the Grand Rapids Community Foundation. Through a partnership with the Grand Rapids Area Mutual Aid Network, Movimiento Cosecha GR and eight local Latinx organizations, a fund called La Lucha or The Struggle in English has been launched. So far, $100,000 have been invested assisting undocumented immigrants pay for basic needs like rent, groceries or utilities.

“Even though this effort is an effort started by mostly Latinx organizations the funds are available for any undocumented immigrant or mixed status families to access.”

That’s Lorena Aguayo Marquez from Movimiento Cosecha GR. She says undocumented residents of Kent County can apply to receive up to $500 per family by accessing the application at: bit.ly/laluchafund. For those interested in donating to the fund you can go to www.givegr.org/laluchafund.