Immigrants Rising’s Facilitated Activity Groups offer undocumented young people tangible skills, knowledge, and accountability to pursue personal, educational, and professional goals.

Promotional graphic for Facilitated Activity Groups

Facilitated Activity Groups provide a space for undocumented high school and college students to explore a topic while building relationships with one another. All activity groups will be guided by a skilled facilitator who is intimately familiar with the undocumented experience.

Activity Groups will meet for 6 consecutive weeks in a virtual setting. Explore the topics we’re offering this year below.

#ICanAffordCollege: Financing a College Education as an Undocumented Student

What will I learn from this activity group?

Everyone deserves an education that is enjoyable, fulfilling, and free from constraints! Unfortunately, undocumented students face additional barriers to pursuing their educational goals and enjoying their educational journeys due to the added stress that comes with limited access to financial and campus resources. This activity group will introduce you to strategies, resources, tips, and key actionable steps you can take to finance your college education and advocate for more and better campus resources. By the end of this activity group, you will implement a plan to increase your funding to help you alleviate some of the financial barriers to pursuing your educational goals.

You will receive a Certificate of Completion after attending at least five sessions.

Who can participate in this activity group?

This activity group is for undocumented high school and college students in the U.S.

When is this activity group offered?

This activity group is offered three times between Fall 2022 and Spring 2023.

  • Fall Session: Tuesdays, 4 – 5:15 p.m. PT (starting 10/11/2022, ending 11/15/2022)
  • Winter Session: Tuesdays, 4 – 5:15 p.m. PT (starting 1/24/23, ending 2/28/23)
  • Spring Session: Tuesdays, 4 – 5:15 p.m. PT (starting 4/4/23, ending 5/8/23)
Who is the facilitator?

Watch the video below and read Cris Mercado’s bio here.




REGISTER HERE

Immigrants Rising’s Wellness Support Groups help undocumented young people stay grounded and connected to community.

Graphic for Wellness Support Groups

These 6-week Wellness Support Groups led by trained mental health providers or registered clinicians, are designed to help undocumented people feel less alone and more understood. The weekly virtual sessions are closed; meaning that advance registration is required, with the goal of creating a confidential space where 10-12 participants can feel grounded, find community, and share their unique experiences, challenges, and successes with one another. Note: though participation can be therapeutic, the groups are not a form of therapy.

Upcoming Support Groups

Black and Undocumented Support Group

Black & Undocumented Support Group

The focus of this group will be to help participants identify mindfulness practices to incorporate into their lifestyles. Mindfulness can improve emotional well-being, and together we will explore how it helps; discuss how people experience stress; learn to identify dysregulation; understand the impact of connecting mind, body, and soul; and several categories of mindfulness practices.

About the Facilitator

Akiah Robinson Selwa, LMFT, is a licensed Marriage Family Therapist, and founder/president of Sunrise Therapy Center (SCT), Marriage, Family, and Child Counseling, Inc. Akiah has over 21 years of work experience as a domestic violence prevention advocate, psychotherapist, clinical supervisor, anti-trafficking abolitionist, and clinical program manager in the public health and private practice sectors. Akiah is very skilled in working with families, individuals, children, the BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, Persons of Color) population, domestic violence/trafficked survivors, and members of the adoption/foster care constellations. Akiah approaches treatment with cultural humility that promotes acceptance, empowerment, and creativity. Akiah has developed specializations in biblical counseling, trauma-informed therapy, Somatic-Experiencing treatment, family therapy, and play therapy.

Schedule & Info

Dates: 6 consecutive Thursdays beginning on November 3, 2022
Time: 4 p.m. PT / 7 p.m. ET

REGISTER HERE

UndocuLGBTQ+ Support Group

UndocuLGBTQ+ Support Group

Being LGBTQ in a heteronormative society isn’t easy, and it can be more challenging when you are from a culture that is not accepting of your identity. Add to the mix the pressures of being undocumented, and you have yourself an intersectional identity that can be ripe for distress! This group is open to all individuals who identify as LGBTQ seeking a safe space. Over the six weeks, we will share stories that can be mirrored and validated, discuss relevant issues facing our community, and build community in a safe and nonjudgmental environment. The themes discussed throughout the six weeks will be determined by the participants, so anyone who is LGBTQ can join and show up as you are.

About the Facilitator

Mayra Jimenez, LMFT, is a DACAmented Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Southern California. She has worked in the non-profit mental health sector for over 10 years in a variety of roles, starting from administrative coordination to clinical work and supervision. She utilizes her lived experiences as a way to guide the way she engages clients in therapy. Her strengths are in using a direct but soft approach to help clients through their experiences and struggles. She is able to use her experiences to inform her approach while also taking into consideration the unique experiences of clients. Mayra enjoys the challenge of being able to provide mental health services to communities that typically not access or are open to mental health treatment.

Schedule & Info

Dates: 6 consecutive Tuesdays beginning on November 1, 2022
Time: 3 p.m. PT / 6 p.m. ET

REGISTER HERE

Undocuwomen Support Group

Undocuwomen Support Group (Wednesdays)

The support of sisters is unique and nourishing. This group is open to all undocuwomen seeking a space for sharing and connection in times of uncertainty. Exploring an intersectional identity can lead us to learn new coping skills and strategies from one another as we examine the impact of our multiple identities. The themes we’ll explore in this group will be determined by the first session—because you know your support needs best. We will come as we are, share what we know, and celebrate one another’s successes.

About the Facilitator

Lina Hannigan, Ph.D. is a licensed clinical psychologist in private practice. She earned her doctorate degree at Alliant International University, specializing in health psychology. She received extensive training in primary care behavioral medicine and chronic pain management at UCSF/SFGH and Kaiser Permanente, integrating the physical and mental domains to optimize health. As a Japanese American whose parents were immigrants, Lina grew up navigating between cultures. She worked as an English teacher in a small town in Hokkaido, Japan, before going to graduate school with a commitment to serve the API community. She is a member of NichiBei Care, providing services to Japanese-speaking individuals and couples. She is proud to be a volunteer therapist at Immigrants Rising.

Schedule & Info

Dates: 6 consecutive Wednesdays beginning on November 2, 2022
Time: 1 p.m. PT / 4 p.m. ET

REGISTER HERE

Formerly Undocumented Support Group

Formerly Undocumented Support Group

This group focuses on providing support to formerly undocumented individuals. When your immigration status changes, so do many other aspects of your life. Rebuilding a peer group, finding support, and adapting to your new status can be challenging, but you are not alone. Join us!

About the Facilitator

Muriel Casamayor, LMFT, is a Latina therapist in California. She specializes in serving BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) living with depression, anxiety and trauma. Muriel understands the journey of immigrating to another country and rewriting your own narrative. Her practice is located in Riverside and Tustin, but she provides telehealth services throughout California.

Schedule & Info

Dates: 6 consecutive Fridays beginning on November 4, 2022
Time: 9 a.m. PT / 12 p.m. ET

REGISTER HERE

Undocuwomen Support Group

Undocuwomen Support Group (Tuesdays)

The support of sisters is unique and nourishing. This group is open to all undocuwomen seeking a space for sharing and connection in times of uncertainty. Exploring an intersectional identity can lead us to learn new coping skills and strategies from one another as we examine the impact of our multiple identities. The themes we’ll explore in this group will be determined by the first session—because you know your support needs best. We will come as we are, share what we know, and celebrate one another’s successes.

About the Facilitator

Huyen “Kiki” Vo, LCSW, is a DACAmented Vietnamese immigrant, a licensed psychotherapist, and a mental health clinician at Stanford Medicine, Children’s Health. She has the privilege of providing services to children, adolescents, individuals, and families from diverse backgrounds (e.g. low-income, AAPI, mixed status, undocumented, BIPOC, LGBTQ, etc.) throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. She values a holistic and collaborative approach to care, utilizing a trauma-informed cultural humility and strength-based lens to promote clients’ self-determination, potential, and resilience. She honors each client’s unique history, cultural background, personality, and lived experience, and meets them where they are in their respective self-discovery/healing journey.

Schedule & Info

Dates: 6 consecutive Tuesdays beginning on November 1, 2022
Time: 6:30 p.m. PT / 9:30 p.m. ET

Registration is closed for this session.

UndocuLatinx Support Group

UndocuLatinx Support Group

Life with an undocumented status means facing uncertainty on a daily basis and noticing how it impacts many aspects of life. In this group, we will collectively discuss the different ways that uncertainty affects life, relationships, and wellbeing for each participant. As a group, we will also have an opportunity to reflect on experiences confronting uncertainty in the past and present. We will make space to connect, support, and learn from one another throughout the group process. The facilitator will introduce and guide participants through coping strategies and relaxation techniques that can be utilized at any point.

About the Facilitator

Stephanie Del Chiaro is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) who was born and raised in San Francisco’s Mission District. She helps people find meaning, give language to experiences, develop deeper self-understanding, and create more peace in their lives and relationships. Stephanie provides therapy through a lens that embraces her client’s culture and lived experience. The work that she does with clients is led by the client and builds upon their strengths, values and personality. She infuses humor, creative and visual arts, and an eclectic mix of therapeutic modalities that best suit each client and their situation.

Schedule & Info

Dates: 6 consecutive Wednesdays beginning on November 2, 2022
Time: 2 p.m. PT / 5 p.m. ET

Registration is closed for this session.

Interested in facilitating a support group?

Please contact our Mental Health Team at mentalhealth@immigrantsrising.org for more information.

Click here to see previous support groups.

Immigrants Rising’s Educational Transitions Coaching provides undocumented students mentorship and guidance to successfully transition to their next stage in life.

Promotional graphic for Educational Transitions Coaching

Immigrants Rising Coaches are experts in working directly with undocumented students. Our coaches will work with you to achieve the goals that you identify between January and May 2022. Coaches support you through active listening, asking questions, and being fully invested in your success. They provide a safe space for you to envision and plan your next steps. Our coaches are part of a network of other undocumented folks and will be able to connect you to a supportive community as well.

Who is this for?

Educational Transitions Coaching is for students who:

  • Attend or are affiliated with one of our Catalyst Fund Campuses
  • Are foreign-born
  • Do not have permanent residency (green card) or citizenship in the U.S.
  • Are available to receive coaching for a span of up to 4 months
What can I expect from coaching?

You will meet with your coach in a 1-1 video zoom call once a week to discuss your situation and empower your actions.

Your coach can support you with:

  • Setting academic goals and academic support
  • Career/post-graduation income generation
  • Guidance on what actions will most impact your goals
  • Legal, academic, and mental health resources
  • Navigating family dynamics
When does coaching begin?

We are not currently accepting any new coaching participants.

Click here for answers to more Commonly Asked Questions.




Immigrants Rising’s Wellness Support Groups help undocumented young people stay grounded and connected to community.

Graphic for Wellness Support Groups

These 6-week Wellness Support Groups led by trained mental health providers or registered clinicians, are designed to help undocumented people feel less alone and more understood. The weekly virtual sessions are closed; meaning that advance registration is required, with the goal of creating a confidential space where 10-12 participants can feel grounded, find community, and share their unique experiences, challenges, and successes with one another. Note: though participation can be therapeutic, the groups are not a form of therapy.

Upcoming Support Groups

April 2021 API Support Group

API Support Group

This group is designed to support anyone who identifies as API. We will discuss issues the API population faces, especially the current social and political climate. Topics include but are not limited to: discrimination and violence against API; COVID-19 and its effects on our community; model minority myths; the concept of family; feeling of guilt; interdependency; Tiger mom attitude; culturally specific communication styles; generational gaps; and assimilation into mainstream culture.

About the Facilitator

Akiko was born and raised in Tokyo, Japan. Her first career was as a dancer and then she worked in the entertainment industry. Akiko moved to London to become a dance movement psychotherapist, and later obtained her doctorate in Educational Psychology at the University of Hawaii. She completed the clinical psychology postdoctoral respecialization program at California Professional School of Psychology/Alliant International University and is now a licensed psychologist in California. Akiko has worked at mental health clinics and hospitals in Tokyo and London, schools in London and San Francisco, and community mental health programs in San Francisco. She currently works in private practice located in San Francisco’s Japantown. She is a former president of the San Francisco Psychological Association.

Schedule & Info

Dates: 6 consecutive Tuesdays beginning on May 4, 2021
Time: 6:30 – 8:00 p.m. PT / 9:30 – 11:00 p.m. ET

REGISTER HERE

April 2021 Chair Yoga and Meditation Support Group

Chair Yoga/Meditation Support Group

Chair yoga is a gentle practice that allows for poses to be performed while seated and/or with the aid of a chair. Yoga helps with increased flexibility, strength, and bodily awareness. Yoga also helps with managing anxiety, stress, and depression.

What to expect:

  • Gentle movements and postures.
  • Coordination of breath and movement.
  • Introduction to meditation.

How to prepare:

  • Dress comfortably.
  • Have a chair nearby, if possible. Alternatively, you can sit on a yoga mat (actual yoga mat, towel, blanket, grass, floor, etc.).
  • Whatever you need nearby: water, tea, candle, crystals, anything!
About the Facilitator

Ariana (they/them/their) identifies as a queer, nonbinary, child of immigrant parents de Jalisco y Tijuana. Ariana is first generation, bilingüe, y was raised in the emotional and physical borderlands of Mexicanidad y los Estados Unidos. In 2019, Ariana became a certified yoga instructor and founded POC meets Rainbow, a movement that centers the wellbeing of QT/BIPOCs in the yoga and meditation wellness world. They also hold a master’s degree in Couple and Family Therapy from Alliant International University, California School of Professional Psychology, including certification in LGBT Human Services and Mental Health. Ariana is a psychotherapist in California.

#LMFT110793 | arianalozano.com | @poc_meets_rainbow

Schedule & Info

Dates: 6 consecutive Thursdays beginning on April 29, 2021
Time: 12:00 – 1:00 p.m. PT / 3:00 – 4:00 p.m. ET

REGISTER HERE

May 2021 Undocuwomen Support Group

Undocuwomen Support Group

The support of sisters is unique and nourishing. This group is open to all undocuwomen seeking a space for sharing and connection in times of uncertainty. Exploring an intersectional identity can lead us to learn new coping skills and strategies from one another as we examine the impact of our multiple identities. The themes we’ll explore in this group will be determined by the first session—because you know your support needs best. We will come as we are, share what we know, and celebrate one another’s successes.

About the Facilitator

Virginia Garcia, a Licensed Professional Counselor – Associate, is the daughter of a Bracero father and an activist mother, both Mexican immigrants in the Midwest. She is currently a doctoral student in Counselor Education and Supervision at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio while living, working, and loving in the borderlands of Laredo, Texas. While Virginia has worn many career hats, she’s focused on uplifting immigrant populations via activist groups such as the Laredo Immigrant Alliance and the No Border Wall Coalition, among others. She is currently a counselor-associate for Usawa Services and embarking on a new venture with Solsana Wellness. She lives in a creaky historic home with her partner and way too many pets.

Schedule & Info

Dates: 6 consecutive Thursdays beginning on May 13, 2021
Time: 5:00 – 6:00 p.m. PT / 8:00 – 9:00 p.m. ET

REGISTER HERE

Interested in facilitating a support group?

Please contact our Mental Health Team at mentalhealth@immigrantsrising.org for more information.


Past Support Groups

Foundations of WellBEing facilitated by Bianca L. Rodriguez, MA, Ed.M, LMFT

Foundations of WellBEing facilitated by Bianca L. Rodriguez, MA, Ed.M, LMFT
Foundations of WellBEing is a 6-week course that will provide participants with an understanding of how personal transformation works and how to navigate it gracefully. Part of the process includes learning to regulate your emotions, build self-love/esteem, listen to your intuition, and surrender to the flow of the Universe. Participants will gain actionable steps to immediately begin using in real world scenarios to see results, including increased happiness, clarity, and meaning.
Redefining Rest in the Latinx Community facilitated by Dr. Susana Marquez

Redefining Rest in the Latinx Community facilitated by Dr. Susana Marquez
The goal of this group is to teach participants the importance of resting to better their mental and emotional health. We will explore the negative connotations placed on “rest” by our community or family members, as well as the deeply rooted emphasis on “work and grind.” Participants will identify healthy ways of resting and creating a healthy balance between work and rest. They will learn how to effectively communicate the need to rest to family members, and how to set boundaries around it.
UndocuAPI Support Group facilitated by Lina Hannigan, Ph.D.

UndocuAPI Support Group facilitated by Lina Hannigan, Ph.D.
There are 1.7 million undocumented Asian and Pacific Islander (API) immigrants in the U.S., with the vast majority living in California. However, the phrase “undocumented immigrant” often evokes imagery and services intended specifically for the Latinx community. As a result, the diverse needs and identities of the API community are commonly overlooked. This group is a place for API individuals to come together to hear and be heard, sharing stories that express each person’s unique experience and culture. Through thoughtful questions and prompts, we will build the strength of community that comes from recognizing common values, empathizing with familiar pressures, and finding comfort in our shared humanity.

Immigrants Rising’s Wellness Support Groups help undocumented young people stay grounded and connected to community.

Graphic for Wellness Support Groups

These 6-week Wellness Support Groups led by trained mental health providers or registered clinicians, are designed to help undocumented people feel less alone and more understood. The weekly virtual sessions are closed; meaning that advance registration is required, with the goal of creating a confidential space where 10-12 participants can feel grounded, find community, and share their unique experiences, challenges, and successes with one another. Note: though participation can be therapeutic, the groups are not a form of therapy.

Upcoming Support Groups

April 2021 API Support Group

API Support Group

This group is designed to support anyone who identifies as API. We will discuss issues the API population faces, especially the current social and political climate. Topics include but are not limited to: discrimination and violence against API; COVID-19 and its effects on our community; model minority myths; the concept of family; feeling of guilt; interdependency; Tiger mom attitude; culturally specific communication styles; generational gaps; and assimilation into mainstream culture.

About the Facilitator

Akiko was born and raised in Tokyo, Japan. Her first career was as a dancer and then she worked in the entertainment industry. Akiko moved to London to become a dance movement psychotherapist, and later obtained her doctorate in Educational Psychology at the University of Hawaii. She completed the clinical psychology postdoctoral respecialization program at California Professional School of Psychology/Alliant International University and is now a licensed psychologist in California. Akiko has worked at mental health clinics and hospitals in Tokyo and London, schools in London and San Francisco, and community mental health programs in San Francisco. She currently works in private practice located in San Francisco’s Japantown. She is a former president of the San Francisco Psychological Association.

Schedule & Info

Dates: 6 consecutive Tuesdays beginning on May 4, 2021
Time: 6:30 – 8:00 p.m. PT / 9:30 – 11:00 p.m. ET

REGISTER HERE

April 2021 Chair Yoga and Meditation Support Group

Chair Yoga/Meditation Support Group

Chair yoga is a gentle practice that allows for poses to be performed while seated and/or with the aid of a chair. Yoga helps with increased flexibility, strength, and bodily awareness. Yoga also helps with managing anxiety, stress, and depression.

What to expect:

  • Gentle movements and postures.
  • Coordination of breath and movement.
  • Introduction to meditation.

How to prepare:

  • Dress comfortably.
  • Have a chair nearby, if possible. Alternatively, you can sit on a yoga mat (actual yoga mat, towel, blanket, grass, floor, etc.).
  • Whatever you need nearby: water, tea, candle, crystals, anything!
About the Facilitator

Ariana (they/them/their) identifies as a queer, nonbinary, child of immigrant parents de Jalisco y Tijuana. Ariana is first generation, bilingüe, y was raised in the emotional and physical borderlands of Mexicanidad y los Estados Unidos. In 2019, Ariana became a certified yoga instructor and founded POC meets Rainbow, a movement that centers the wellbeing of QT/BIPOCs in the yoga and meditation wellness world. They also hold a master’s degree in Couple and Family Therapy from Alliant International University, California School of Professional Psychology, including certification in LGBT Human Services and Mental Health. Ariana is a psychotherapist in California.

#LMFT110793 | arianalozano.com | @poc_meets_rainbow

Schedule & Info

Dates: 6 consecutive Thursdays beginning on April 29, 2021
Time: 12:00 – 1:00 p.m. PT / 3:00 – 4:00 p.m. ET

REGISTER HERE

May 2021 Undocuwomen Support Group

Undocuwomen Support Group

The support of sisters is unique and nourishing. This group is open to all undocuwomen seeking a space for sharing and connection in times of uncertainty. Exploring an intersectional identity can lead us to learn new coping skills and strategies from one another as we examine the impact of our multiple identities. The themes we’ll explore in this group will be determined by the first session—because you know your support needs best. We will come as we are, share what we know, and celebrate one another’s successes.

About the Facilitator

Virginia Garcia, a Licensed Professional Counselor – Associate, is the daughter of a Bracero father and an activist mother, both Mexican immigrants in the Midwest. She is currently a doctoral student in Counselor Education and Supervision at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio while living, working, and loving in the borderlands of Laredo, Texas. While Virginia has worn many career hats, she’s focused on uplifting immigrant populations via activist groups such as the Laredo Immigrant Alliance and the No Border Wall Coalition, among others. She is currently a counselor-associate for Usawa Services and embarking on a new venture with Solsana Wellness. She lives in a creaky historic home with her partner and way too many pets.

Schedule & Info

Dates: 6 consecutive Thursdays beginning on May 13, 2021
Time: 5:00 – 6:00 p.m. PT / 8:00 – 9:00 p.m. ET

REGISTER HERE

Interested in facilitating a support group?

Please contact our Mental Health Team at mentalhealth@immigrantsrising.org for more information.


Past Support Groups

Foundations of WellBEing facilitated by Bianca L. Rodriguez, MA, Ed.M, LMFT
UndocuAPI Support Group facilitated by Lina Hannigan, Ph.D.
Redefining Rest in the Latinx Community facilitated by Dr. Susana Marquez
A Second Opinion

Creative Writing Class, Educator, Leadership Council, Staff

"I wanted to get a second opinion because I hoped the first attorney had overlooked something. Or maybe things had changed. I'm so happy that I did get a second opinion because I learned that I had a potential remedy through political asylum."

Julio Navarrete

Creative Writing Class, Educator, Leadership Council, Staff

"Immigrants Rising to me is a community that will welcome you with open arms and support you even through your most difficult moments."

Denia Perez

Creative Writing Class, High School Engagement, Legal Services Team, Program Participant, Scholar, Staff

"Immigrants are resourceful, resilient people who have the same dreams as generations who came before us"

Denia Perez

Creative Writing Class, High School Engagement, Legal Services Team, Program Participant, Scholar, Staff

"Because I know how hard it is for people to get status, I wanted to find a way to advocate for other undocumented people"