Latino Advocacy Group Gets Grant

An Oxnard-based Latino advocacy group has received a $65,000 grant to help fund citizenship workshops and study the needs of Ventura County residents in anticipation of sweeping welfare reform initiatives.

The Woodland Hills-based California Endowment awarded the money earlier this month to El Concilio del Condado de Ventura.

The California Endowment, established in 1966, is a private foundation dedicated to improving access to affordable, quality health care.

El Concilio will use the money to help at least 1,000 legal residents wade through the application process for U.S. citizenship. The group also plans to conduct workshops and a needs assessment for Latinos who stand to be affected by welfare reform measures.

"We want to conduct a real survey of what's happening out there and make some projections for what will be needed in the future," said Francisco Dominguez, El Concilio's executive director.

Dominguez said he expects the needs survey to be completed in about eight months.

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