Teaching Chicago Style Politics
In Spring of 2008 ICIRR approached its sister coalitions, national partners, and the Four Freedoms Fund with an idea - to create the first national "New Americans Democracy Boot Camp". The Goal of the boot camp was to create high quality civic engagement training for young immigrants and children of immigrants to better organize these often hard to reach communities and build leadership in the next generation of community organizers. The “New Americans Democracy Boot Camp” was kicked off on June 28, 2008 with a “New Americans Democracy Day” celebration. This included a naturalization workshop and a non‐partisan celebration of immigrant civic participation attended by 500 Illinois leaders, the 63 participants in the Boot Camp, senior Illinois Senator and Majority Whip Dick Durbin, and Illinois Congressman and Deputy Majority Whip Jan Schakowsky, as well as such national leaders of the immigrant rights movement as Ali Noorani of the National Immigration Forum; Frank Sharry of America’s Voice; and Simon Rosenberg of NDN.