Aliento Highlights of 2017!
It has been a crazy year here at Aliento! From celebrating our first year anniversary to driving 48 hours to Washington D.C.! Here are our top 7 highlights of 2017
1. Allies Trainings
This year we kick off our new model of training allies. We trained over 600 people who are committed to support and stand with our undocumented students, families, and community!
2. Una Luz, Un Aliento
A week after Trump took office, we held a community fundraiser event. We invited Filipinx Singer, AKA SoulTree CambaNationOfThings, to perform songs that explore the depth, nuance, and intersectionality of human-undocumented experience. Our former Arts Program Coordinator, Ileana Salinas also inspired and moved us with her song, Calma as an opening piece about her experience of healing of being detained unjustly by ICE.
3. Full Team On Board
This year we saw three notable people joining Aliento! Maxima the Great, Diego the Digital Dude, and Patiño the Elder Dreamer! All three bring different skills and mindsets that make the team very culturally diverse and unique!
4. One Year Anniversary
This year we celebrated our one year anniversary! We were planning on having something small for our volunteers and the community, but we ended up selling out and packing the place! With the help of art performers Raquel and Alyson, we integrated our audience, and reflected on our personal history with Aliento through an interactive performance! It was an amazing experience to co-create art in community! Big thank you to everyone who came and celebrated with us and special shout out to our intern Yasmeen for making this happen!
5. Reyna is a badass
As the title would suggest, our founder Reyna Montoya is a badass! This year she was chosen as a 2017 Echoing Green Fellow for her work at Aliento. Named Artist Activist for #NBCLatino20. Was recognized by U2 as one of AZ's inspirational women of the world during their performance of "Ultraviolet.” And finally, was named by Forbes Magazine as one of the top social entrepreneurs under the age of 30!
6. Launching the Vote4Dream campaign
In late November, a group of us drove 48 hours to D.C. Our goal was to create dialogue with members of congress across the aisle and to push for a permanent solution for undocumented youth before the end of the year. We had DACAmented youth, allies, students, business leaders, and faith leaders join us from all over the country! In 4 weeks, the team spoke to more than 400 members of congress! In the end, congress extended the deadline to next year. Regardless, the team still did an amazing job! We will not forget all the experiences we shared past 4 weeks! We go home as stronger community and we are ready to continue the momentum! We will be back at Capitol Hill starting January.
7. DACA is rescinded
On the morning of September 5th, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that DACA is being rescinded. We always knew DACA was temporary measure. It’s heartbreaking the way DACA ended, leaving DACA recipients vulnerable to deportations. Congress had over five years since DACA’s inception to pass a permanent solution. Now, President Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions had decided to act inhumanly, it is up to congress to pass legislation that will prevent the deportation of close to one million DACA recipients. Beginning on a March 6th, close to 1,000 DACA permits will expire daily, we cannot wait any longer.