Project Thrive: Floreciendo tus Sueños

IM4HI is excited to announce that we are one of eight organizations awarded a grant through the California Department of Labor’s SEED Initiative to promote the entrepreneurship of immigrants, English language learners, and those who face employment barriers, regardless of their immigration status.

Together with you, IM4HI has been accompanying and supporting immigrants, asylum seekers and those formerly detained who often face barriers to employment. Access to employment because of language, lack of work permit, and other barriers are a major challenge to financial stability. This entrepreneurial training development program will help people we are accompanying do more than survive, but to thrive. Our entrepreneurship program, called Project Thrive: Floreciendo tus Sueños, will help create avenues and pathways for economic independence and augment the understanding and capacity of people who are the economic engines for their families and communities.

This state funded grant allows us to offer multi-lingual entrepreneurial courses and 25 microgrants to select individuals who complete the program. We are pleased to be working with two outstanding immigrant small business women who will be providing training and technical assistance. (Read more about them below). The course will take place in person in the Inland Empire, but available virtually to immigrants in our network across the state.

Those who complete the program will have an increased understanding of the legal options available for small business entrepreneurship regardless of immigration status and the major components to successfully launching and running a business. The six week training course is free and will be offered in both Spanish and English. Those who complete the course will be eligible to apply to receive a microgrant and technical assistance that will help them take the next step to support their small business.

Project Thrive is a program that paves the way for immigrant communities and others who face barriers to flourish and thrive!

Registration Information

Apply here:

For more information contact Hilda Cruz:
909.736.0892 |

Meet the Trainers

Silvia Guardado

Silvia Guardado | Business Development Consultant

An immigrant of El Salvador, Silvia owns an accounting firm. She has more than twenty years of experience helping small business entrepreneurs with financial and compliance needs. She has worked as an instructor with SCORE, helping beginning business owners use QuickBooks, manage cash flow, and thrive. She currently works with the National Latina Business Women Association of the Inland Empire (where she was a founding board member, treasurer, and instructor) to help small business owners obtain loans through the PPP federal loan program.

Delila Vasquez, M.A.

Delila Vasquez, M.A. | Business Development Consultant

An immigrant business woman, Delila has more than thirty years’ experience working with homeless families, immigrants, and incarcerated people in the Inland Empire. She is the founder of Demi Cocina, a small business promoting healthy food choices for Latinx families. She and Silvia co-designed this course curriculum during a Business Academy at the Camara de Comercio Hispana de Pomona and have delivered it seven business courses through SMG Business Services. Delila has served on the Board of Directors of the National Association of Business Women in the Inland Empire, and was Vice President in 2017.

IM4HI Vision

Our faith values safeguard the human rights of DACA recipients, asylum seekers, and unaccompanied minors

Miriam leading a DACA Prayer Vigil, September 2017

By: Miriam Noriega, IM4HI Program Director

I still believe in my country, even though I have personally experienced discrimination for being undocumented. This week the immigrant and ally community felt a gut punch at the news of the judge stopping new applicants for DACA. The right to work is a human right, and ending DACA during the COVID-19 pandemic denies this right to thousands of people who have been facing economic hardships and excluded from receiving government economic relief. 

I still believe in my country, even though exclusions are a common practice in immigration policy. The most recent exclusion of single adults, as the Biden-Harriss administration discusses, limiting the rescindment of Title 42 to only families. This exclusion denies the human right to ask for asylum at our border and the due process during the application process. The group that we foresee being most affected by this exclusión is the LGBTQ community. They seek asylum because they face constant life-threatening circumstances in their home country.  The second group we are concerned about is Black immigrants who face higher levels of racism throughout their immigration journey, loans for their journey, and deportations rates. It is important that Title 42 is rescinded without any exclusions.

The Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity believes that our country has the resources and the will to create humane and just practices to keep families together, welcome those seeking protection and refuge, and protect and nurture children. Since spring, we have collected letters from people of faith to the Biden-Harriss administration to use their administrative power to rescind Title 42 and join our vision to create more humane policies for all immigrants. The previous presidential administration initiated this policy during the pandemic; rather than controlling the pandemic, it has caused more harm to the immigrant community. As a result, families continue to be separated, and now we are facing a high number of unaccompanied minors. We invite you to listen to the story of one youth that experienced being held in an influx center only to be sent to detention when he turned 18 years old. A report like this reveals that unaccompanied minors held in influx centers, such as the Pomona Fairplex, are harmful to the child’s development. Evidence suggests that children housed in these situations face severe trauma and “will likely suffer acute, sustained, and even permanent impacts to their minds and bodies.” These “emergency influx shelters” are part of decades of policies under Republican and Democratic administrations to criminalize versus humanize migrants. Our country has enough resources to welcome new immigrants with dignity, responsibility, and compassion. Rather than budgeting U.S. tax dollars to detention centers and influx centers, allocate these resources to reform the asylum-seeking process for everyone.


Just Closures: Releases Not Transfers

Please join Detention Watch Network for “Just Closures: Releases Not Transfers” webinar. During this one hour webinar, learn from attorneys and organizers on how to demand and push for releases not transfers as we continue to build the movement to shut down immigration detention centers. Speakers will also highlight pitfalls from shutdown fights and the need to coordinate and collaborate among directly impacted community members, organizers, advocates, and attorneys.

Our featured speakers include:

  • Alina Das, Co-Director of Immigrant Rights Clinic at New York University of Law
  • Liz Hercules-Paez, Staff Attorney of Public Counsel
  • Reverend Deborah Lee, Executive Director of Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity

Únase a DWN para el seminario web “Cierres Justos: Liberaciones No Traslados”. Durante este seminario web de una hora, aprenda de abogadxs y organizadorxs sobre cómo exigir y presionar por liberaciones, no traslados, mientras continuamos construyendo el movimiento para cerrar los centros de detención de inmigrantes. Lxs presentadorxs también destacarán las trabas de las peleas de cierre y la necesidad de coordinar y colaborar entre miembrxs de la comunidad directamente afectadxs, organizadorxs, defensorxs y abogadxs.

Nuestrxs presentadores incluyen:
-Alina Das, Co-Directora de la Clinica de Derechos Humanos en New York University of Law
-Liz Hercules-Paez, Abogada de Public Counsel
-Reverenda Deborah Lee, Directora Ejecutiva de Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity