News release: Want Citizenship? There’s an App for That!

The CitizenshipWorks mobile app

The CitizenshipWorks mobile app

A new mobile app helps eligible immigrants apply for naturalization. CitizenshipWorks is the only free mobile app available to help legal permanent residents understand and prepare for the naturalization process.  Available in English and Spanish, the app helps eliminate confusion by enabling applicants to:

  • Determine their eligibility to become a U.S. citizen;
  • Walk through and collect documentation for the application process;
  • Find free and low-cost legal help; and
  • Study for the English and Civics tests.

The app, created by Pro Bono Net and the Immigration Advocates Network, also enables citizenship-support service providers to assist greater numbers of applicants.

The mobile app provides a map and directory of local citizenship support services

The mobile app provides a map and directory of local citizenship support services

More than 80 organizations across the nation have already assisted thousands using the interactive web-based screening and application preparation tools on CitizenshipWorks as a part of the New Americans Campaign, a national nonpartisan effort working to streamline and modernize access to naturalization assistance services. The app is the latest example of efforts by the New Americans Campaign to innovate the system of naturalization assistance to help more legal permanent residents become citizens. Now advocates will be able to also offer this easy-to-use, plain language mobile app for immigrants to better navigate the process.

As Congress grapples with landmark immigration legislation, more than eight million legal immigrants are eligible for citizenship without a single change to the law. Yet only about eight percent of them naturalize each year. They face a range of barriers, including high application fees and a cumbersome, lengthy application process. Several efforts to support naturalization are gaining momentum, as the public and private sectors recognize the value and benefits of citizenship, such as the Bethlehem Project, an initiative to motivate private sector companies to provide citizenship assistance to employees.

The app also provides an easy-to-use checklist of requirements

The app also provides an easy-to-use checklist of requirements

The app is available in the iTunes store and on Google Play for Android. CitizenshipWorks is funded by the New Americans Campaign, the Knight Foundation and the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, and is a project of the Immigration Advocates Network (IAN), the Immigrant Legal Resource Center and Pro Bono Net.

Below: A quick chat with Tony Lu, the CitizenshipWorks project manager, about the unique new mobile app that can help millions of eligible legal immigrants on their path to citizenship.

Download the news release here:

Release - NAC - CitizenshipWorks App Launch
Release - NAC - CitizenshipWorks App Launch
NAC - CitizenshipWorks app launch - 7-8-13 EV3.docx
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Posted on July 3, 2013

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