Launched by ScholarshipsA-Z and Literacy Connects, the GED2DACA program aims to help DREAMers overcome educational obstacles to obtaining the benefits of DACA.

In order to apply for DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), undocumented individuals must have a high school diploma, high school equivalency diploma (GED or other), or be currently enrolled in school. Those who do not have these qualifications are barred from enrolling in public education programs. And financial barriers effectively prevent these young people from enrolling in private education programs.

The laws put these often-forgotten individuals into a “Catch-22” situation: They are unable to apply for DACA because they lack a high school equivalency (HSE) diploma, yet they are unable to take HSE preparation courses at most public institutions because they lack the documents that DACA provides. There is little hope for these young people to follow their dreams. And without the deportation protection offered by DACA, their futures teeter in the balance.

That’s why GED2DACA helps prepare DREAMers in Pima County, Arizona to earn their high school equivalency diplomas and apply for DACA. The 10-week preparation sessions are free of charge and do not require proof of residency. ScholarshipsA-Z and Literacy Connects hope that with the success of this program, it will be expanded to other areas in Arizona.