2008 GCIR National Convening

Promoting Immigrant Integration: Leadership in Challenging Times

Chicago, Illinois
Blackstone Hotel
June 18-20, 2008


A longstanding immigrant destination with vibrant ethnic neighborhoods, Chicago provides a rich laboratory for exploring barriers and promising approaches to immigrant integration. Foundations will glean important insights, lessons, and best practices to guide their work back home.

The convening will focus on some of the most critical immigrant-related issues facing communities across the United States, including:

  • Current local, state and federal policies that further or compromise immigrants’ ability to integrate.
  • The importance of building cross-issue, cross-community and cross-sector alliances to advance immigrant integration in challenging times.
  • Efforts to strengthen the infrastructure for immigrant civic integration to help newcomers establish a foothold and become active members of our democracy.
  • The push for comprehensive immigration at the federal level.
  • Influence of the immigrant vote on the 2008 elections.
  • Effective framing, messaging, and communications on tough immigrant-related issues.

The program will offer a dynamic combination of sessions:

  • Plenary sessions will provide a "big picture" perspective that illuminates the social, economic, and political context.
  • Workshops will showcase promising models and best practices, particularly those that engage multiple sectors or are crosscutting in approach.
  • Learning tours will reveal what is happening on the ground, including challenges and successes.
  • Training sessions will help deepen understanding and build concrete skills.
  • Film, art exhibits, and live performances will put a human face on complex immigration issues.

Learn more about previous national convenings by viewing our archive.