GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A community-wide effort is making sure undocumented families in Kent county have what they need to protect themselves in this pandemic.
It’s called “la Lucha Fund." La Lucha means struggle.
Several local organizations created this fund to provide emergency aid for the families. Those organizations include Movimiento Cosecha, the Grand Rapids Area Mutual Aid Network, The Hispanic Center of Western Michigan, and LatinxGR. The fund is held at the Grand Rapids Community Foundation.
Those who work in a cash economy, like restaurants and service industries, don’t qualify for unemployment benefits or federal assistance.
As a result, many have trouble paying rent, buying groceries, even having proper medical and cleaning supplies to keep themselves and their families safe and protected against COVID-19.
Therefore, a number of area organizations have donated thousands of dollars, including the Grand Rapids Community Foundation which alone donated $100,000 to grow the fund because they know it will likely go fast.
"We're not going to turn you away," Adnoris Torres reassured. He's the Executive DIrector of the Hispanic Center of Western Michigan. "We're going to try to make avenues and pathways for you to feel supported during this time. It's really, really important that we look at long term solutions beyond COVID. But right now, this is something that the organizations that I mentioned see as a need."