Rosario’s Bethlehem Project story: “I am now an American citizen”

A group of leading technology and service companies officially launched the Bethlehem Project in San Jose last Monday.

The Bethlehem Project, a partner of the New Americans Campaign, seeks to empower businesses to provide citizenship assistance at the work-site to eligible employees.

The following are the top quotes from executives from some of the businesses involved, and some of the people that have benefited directly from the Bethlehem Project:

Rosario Becerra

“I am now an American citizen. Becoming an American has always been important for me because I can vote. I feel like I have a voice. ABM has made it possible to take classes at the worksite. This made it possible for me to learn and become more confident.”
Rosario Becerra, an ABM employee who has benefited from the Bethlehem Project

 

Barbara Kamm

“We at Technology Credit Union support programs such as the Bethlehem Project because they provide much-needed resources and information for green card holders seeking citizenship. It’s important to our membership and to our community, and therefore it’s important to us.”
Barbara B. Kamm, President and CEO of Technology Credit Union

 

Jim Reed

“One of the greatest economic generators for San Jose and Silicon Valley has always been the diversity of our region, and the Bethlehem Project is a wonderful resource for our business community. This partnership will only aid in maximizing the contributions that the immigrant community has already made to our region for over 200 years, and we are happy to welcome the Bethlehem Project to Silicon Valley.”
Jim Reed, Vice President of Public Policy at the Silicon Valley San Jose Chamber of Commerce

Posted on March 24, 2014

Our Impact

  • The Campaign has completed over 3,700 naturalization workshops and clinics.
  • Over 250,000 citizenship applications completed since July 2011.

    Saved aspiring citizens and their families over $206million in legal and application fees.
  • Adopted scalable technology. MP3 players, Google Voice, and Virtual Private Network (VPN) services are being used to enhance naturalization service delivery.
  • Expanded New American Workforce (an effort to provide naturalization assistance within corporations) which has partnered with over 100 businesses across the nation, ranging from hotels in Miami to American Apparel in Los Angeles.
  • Deployed Citizenshipworks, an online tool, across the Campaign in multiple settings and languages. A newly redesigned platform guides applicants through through their citizenship application from start to finish and connects applicants to legal help at partnering non-profits.
  • Were instrumental in inspiring the US Citizenship and Immigration Service to support the Citizenship Corners initiative.
  • Created innovative partnerships with public libraries, school districts, universities, social service agencies, and employers, all of which yield not only greater numbers of applicants but also greater awareness of the naturalization process.
  • Deployed a large-scale volunteer recruitment program through an e-learning course.

    Reached diverse communities. Local partners consistently outreach and provide culturally competent and language-appropriate services.
Learn more from our
Impact Report.

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Who We're Helping

People come to America from all over the world with dreams of achieving a better life for themselves and their families and calling this great nation home. Eight million people who live, work, and pay taxes in this country are eligible for citizenship, yet only about eight percent of them naturalize each year. Find out more about these individuals and the barriers they face.Read More