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Team OIRA Holiday 2020 Newsletter

The Seattle Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs logo featuring the blue Chief Sealth masthead

Happy Holidays and Stay Safe!

A graphic featuring masked emoticons under the text that reads: CELEBRATIONS DURING COVID

This has been a really tough year, and an even tougher holiday season. If you are like many of us, you probably look forward to sharing meals with loved ones during this time. But, the reality is that COVID-19 cases have risen to dangerous new highs, and hospitalizations are up. So, please join us in making the shared sacrifice of celebrating the holidays with family and friends without being together in-person. Learn more about how to keep ourselves and others healthy and safe. The more we consistently follow Public Health guidance, the sooner we can re-open and be with our loved ones in-person.
The Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (Team OIRA)
Thank you for helping us with outreach for the Seattle COVID-19 Disaster Relief Fund for Immigrants!
A blue-hued graphic of the skyline of Seattle with text that reads: THANK YOU!As you may know, the Seattle COVID-19 Disaster Relief Fund for Immigrants application period closed on November 5. We received 18,107 completed applications, with an overwhelming majority demonstrating the immense need for financial aid across the city. Thank you so much for helping inform communities about this program. And huge thanks to our community-based organizational partners who worked night and day on outreach and one-on-one assistance for applicants. Funds should start being disbursed in early December. And we join the mayor in continuing to advocate for federal assistance that is accessible to all workers regardless of status.
The Washington Immigrant Relief Fund is still open!
An individual wearing a nose/mouth mask in his car with the Washington COVID-19 Immigrant Relief Fund logo at the bottom on the imageIf you are an undocumented immigrant financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, the application period for the Washington COVID-19 Immigrant Relief Fund is still open. Applicants may be able to receive a $1,000 one-time direct payment (up to $3,000 per household). The government of Washington State administers this program. We at OIRA are unable to answer any questions about this state relief fund. To apply and learn more, please visit: Apply before December 6, 2020!
Enrollment now open for Ready to Work ESOL classes!
A young woman wearing earphones staring down at an unshown computerOur Ready to Work (RTW) program is an ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) class for Seattle adults who want to improve their English language ability while developing employment and computer literacy skills. Students will be loaned a Chromebook to participate in all the online classes. Winter quarter includes four morning and afternoon classes. Participants must be Seattle residents eligible for employment and searching for work or wanting to advance in their current position. Learn more at Winter Quarter registration ends December 18, and classes start January 19, 2021. 
Our Final 2020 Citizenship Workshop is December 5

An outdoor socially distanced naturalization oath ceremony on a sunny dayGet FREE help applying for citizenship!

We’re partnering with OneAmerica and the Korean Community Service Center to offer FREE virtual legal help to eligible lawful permanent residents to apply for citizenship. If you are eligible, now is the perfect time to apply. This last legal clinic of 2020 is Saturday, December 5. You can sign up to attend at this link or call or text (206) 926-3924. And if you are interested in volunteering, please visit this page.

Small Business Stabilization Fund for Businesses and Nonprofits Impacted by COVID-19 is now open!

Do you have a small business in Seattle that has been impacted by COVID-19? The Small Business Stabilization Fund provides $10,000 grants to small businesses throughout Seattle who have been financially impacted by COVID-19. This fund prioritizes:
  • Businesses located in areas of the city that are at risk of high-displacement
  • Businesses with five employees or fewer
  • Creative sector businesses
  • Businesses that have experienced the greatest economic impacts
  • Nonprofits that provide economic supports through education and job training
The deadline to apply is November 30, 2020. For more information and to apply, please visit For questions or assistance, please call (206) 684-8090 or email In-language interpretation is available.
Cool picture of the Seattle skyline looking east.
The City of Seattle COVID-19 Resources page features the latest programs to help those impacted by the pandemic.
Graphic using pastel colors showing a young woman surrounded by butterflies and yelling inot a megaphone with text that reads: UNDOCUMENTED & UNAFRAID
El Centro de la Raza continues to offer scholarships for folks who need help affording the cost of renewing their DACA status.