Through a Mayor's Grant for Cultural Impact administered by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, PEN America and MOME have collaborated to expand the DREAMing Out Loud program, a tuition-free writing workshop created for undocumented immigrants and led by award-winning authors. The program helps build a diverse talent pipeline for the publishing industry, and it empowers DREAMers to use their voices to counter misinformation about immigrants.
The expansion includes the addition of new CUNY sites in the Bronx at Lehman College, Flushing at Queens College and Queensborough Community College, and Central Brooklyn at Kingsborough Community College; recruitment in Chinese, African, and Eastern European communities; and strengthened professional development.
The DREAMing Out Loud program has already successfully empowered Caribbean and LatinX students to develop their storytelling abilities and share their experiences. New York City is home to 560,000 undocumented immigrants, including 30,000 DACA recipients, or DREAMers.