SAFE Network Community Grants

Elevating Grassroots Momentum for Universal Representation

Request for Proposals for Inaugural SAFE Network Community Partnership Grants to Support Universal Representation

The application deadline will be extended until 11:55 p.m. PDT, Wednesday, April 8, 2020.

Applications may be submitted in your preferred language in Word, plain text, PDF, or video format here.

Questions about this solicitation should be directed to

The Vera Institute of Justice (Vera) is seeking proposals from grassroots organizations and advocates committed to mobilizing and centering immigrant communities in furtherance of SAFE pilot programs and in support of universal representation.

In November 2017, Vera launched the SAFE (Safety and Fairness for Everyone) Network by convening a group of 11 diverse cities and counties that committed public funding to provide legal representation for immigrants in their communities who are facing deportation. 

With increased attacks and threats facing immigrants and their families, the communities in the SAFE Network are dedicated to the goal of universal representation—providing publicly funded lawyers for people facing deportation. As SAFE enters its third year, we have successfully launched 18 such programs in 11 states and have shown that publicly funded counsel programs are an effective and common-sense approach to protecting immigrant communities from detention and deportation in the face of harsh federal enforcement. 

The SAFE Network will now issue its inaugural round of community partnership grants to support local organizing and advocacy to advance universal representation. These grants are designed to support work that will  

  • build capacity for a powerful grassroots network in support of universal representation led and informed by communities directly impacted by immigration policies; and/or
  • change the public narrative and elevate public awareness around detention, access to counsel, and universal representation; and/or
  • foster collaborations and broad coalitions around universal representation; and/or
  • build public and governmental will to advance and expand universal representation; and/or
  • elevate the voices of those most impacted so that the lived experiences of immigrant families contribute directly to the movement for universal representation; and
  • use a racial equity lens in organizing and advocating for universal representation for immigrants.

You can learn more and access the Request for Proposals in English here and in Spanish here.

Optional conference calls will be held on March 5, 2020, at 12:30-1:30 p.m. Pacific/3:30-4:30 p.m. Eastern (in English) and on March 6, 2020, 11:30-12:30 p.m. Pacific/2:30-3:30 p.m. Eastern (in Spanish) for additional information. You can register here.

We anticipate that applicants will be notified by Monday, May 25, 2020, of the outcome of their applications.

PDF version of English RFP 

PDF version of Spanish RFP

Safe Network Expansion Map