Mayor Wu Hosts 'We Are Boston 2022: From Dreams To Action'
Mayor Michelle Wu, the Mayor’s Office for Immigrant Advancement (MOIA), and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts hosted "We Are Boston 2022: From Dreams to Action" on March 3, 2022. The annual reception celebrates Boston immigrants and their contributions to the City. It also highlights how government, corporate, and nonprofit sectors can work together for advocacy and change.
“As a daughter of immigrants, I know the vital role that our immigrant families and communities play in making our city more welcoming, more resilient, and more joyful,” said Mayor Wu. “If we want to build a Boston for everyone, we must do so with our immigrant communities at the heart of our efforts.”
“Immigrants and refugees are frontline workers, leaders, and changemakers. Throughout this pandemic, they have helped sustain our schools, our businesses, our hospitals - our entire community. And they are leading the call for equity at this critical moment in our country’s history,” said Andrew Dreyfus, President and CEO of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, event co-host and in-kind sponsor.
During the reception, Mayor Wu addressed her goals for the upcoming year and named this year’s honorees. She awarded the 2022 “We Are Boston Community Champion Award” to the Asian Community Emergency Relief Fund, made up of six local groups. The Fund distributed more than half a million dollars to families that lost incomes because of the pandemic and could not access public benefits, all while facing anti-Asian racism. The 2022 “We Are Boston Corporate Leadership Award” went to Arbella Insurance Foundation because of its generous support of immigrant nonprofits and because of Arbella’s advocacy for the Work and Family Mobility Act.
“The theme of this year’s We Are Boston is ‘From Dreams to Action,’” said Yusufi Vali, Director of the Mayor’s Office for Immigrant Advancement. “We picked this theme because this is the time for action so immigrant dreams can become reality.”
Director Vali spoke about how MOIA worked with public, private, and nonprofit sectors to help immigrants recover from the pandemic, grow immigrant wealth and wages, and respond to the inhumane treatment of Haitians at the border. He also spoke on the department’s goals to build out City resources for legal services, ESOL classes, social integration, and mental health.
Twenty-seven corporate sponsors funded this year’s We Are Boston. Their donations totaling more than $116,500 dollars will go towards operational support and capacity-building for immigrant-serving nonprofits. This year’s champion sponsors are Arbella Insurance Foundation, The Klarman Family Foundation, and State Street Corporation; and the visionary sponsors are Eastern Bank Foundation and Tufts Medical Center. Corporate sponsors are invited to participate in this year’s workshop about how to leverage the diversity and skills of immigrants to benefit their businesses and drive Boston’s economy.
About the Mayor’s Office for Immigrant Advancement
The Mayor’s Office for Immigrant Advancement (MOIA) strives to strengthen the ability of immigrants to fully and equitably participate in economic, civic, social, and cultural life in Boston. MOIA also promotes the recognition and public understanding of the contributions of immigrants to the City. To learn more, visit boston.gov/immigrants.