Immigrant communities have long been at the helm of social change. While there are organizations across the country working to address the needs of immigrants, refugees, migrants, and asylum-seekers, many originated with and are led by well-meaning nonimmigrants who may not fully grasp the complex and diverse experiences of the people they serve.

So facing xenophobia, systemic racism, exploitation, and exclusion, immigrants increasingly are organizing for their own interests and on behalf of their own communities. They understand that it takes strength and tenacity to start a new life in a new place and are using these same qualities to create support networks that put their communities first—in areas from health care to education, workers’ rights to civil rights.