Since its inception, Centro Latino has offered citizenship and immigration services to Chelsea's rapidly growing immigrant population, and this program remains a core function of the agency to the present. Our Immigration & Citizenship Program provides services that are crucial for our community to be able to live and work as contributing members of society. The program includes:
Immigration Consultation: This component provides low cost education and assistance to immigrants seeking to achieve or change their legal status through individual assessments and immigration options. The client meets with the Program Director, an Immigration Specialist, to assess their situation and evaluate options for next steps.
Completion of applications and petitions: The Program Director assists the client with filing the appropriate applications and petitions. These services include translations and notarizations of required documents including Birth Certificates, Marriage Certificates, Certificate of Death, Affidavits, Divorce Decrees and any other official document issued in their Native Language. For a complete list of services, please contact the Program Director.
Citizenship Preparation: Eligible clients get the support they need to become U.S. citizens through Centro's Citizenship preparation services. Each client is introduced to the naturalization process, including the exam and interview, and then receives assistance in completing and submitting the N-400 application and necessary supporting documents. The program also provides support and referral services, if necessary. Clients then enroll in the Citizenship class, the goal of which is to prepare eligible adults for the US Citizenship exam and interview. The class uses a unit-based approach to teach students about the structure of the U.S. Government, citizenship, voting rights and responsibilities, community resources, and the many important roles that all individuals can play in helping to sustain a free and democratic society. Students also practice through mock interviews. In order to successfully complete the course, students must possess an intermediate level of English language proficiency. Advanced registration is required. The course is 10 weeks in length and runs four times annually.
Advocacy and Civic Engagement: The Immigration and Citizenship Program also engages residents through its advocacy and community organizing activities. Our goal is to raise our clientele's awareness of the impact they have as immigrants in their communities, promoting their civic participation and therefore their social development. To this end, Centro Latino is a lead partner in a civic engagement project focused on voter education, registration, and mobilization. Centro also promotes public policies in support of the immigrant population, such as increased funding for ESL, in-state tuition, and fair immigration laws. This is achieved through participation in rallies, communication with elected representatives, and participation in information sessions.
Founded in 1989, Centro Latino serves more than 8,000 Latinos and immigrants in Eastern Massachusetts every year. We offer the broadest range of relevant, high quality classes and programs delivered in a patient and caring environment that helps Latinos and immigrants seeking to improve their lives to become confident and independent members of the community. We are located in Chelsea and Cambridge.
Our mission is to improve the quality of life and promote the self-determination of Latinos and immigrants in Eastern Mass. through education, health, and social well-being strategies.
CENTRO LATINO, INC. • 267 Broadway, Chelsea, MA 02150 • (617) 884-3238 | 105 Windsor Street, Cambridge, MA 02139 • (617) 661-9406