Celebrate our vibrant community at Day of the Immigrant downtown event


The City of Gainesville, Madres Sin Fronteras and a network of local advocacy organizations are hosting a Day of the Immigrant event to celebrate diversity and build community among neighbors of all backgrounds and ethnicities.

When: Saturday, May 1 from 6-8 p.m.

Where: Bo Diddley Plaza, downtown Gainesville

The fellowship celebration includes food trucks, music, and information tables, and is open to the public. To help ensure public health and safety, attendees are asked to wear facial coverings when not eating, and in accordance with the latest CDC guidelines, to practice social distancing at the event.

Neighbors will be able to obtain a community identification (local picture ID) card from the Human Rights Coalition of Alachua County (HRC). (The cost of a Community ID is $10 and details about what’s needed to apply are available online.) The card serves as an alternative ID at public schools, local libraries, participating local banks and direct health and human service providers. In a show of community support, Gainesville Police Department Assistant Chief Terry Pierce will obtain his Community ID at the event.

Near the east end of the stage, a limited quantity of COVID-19 vaccines (Pfizer) will be administered on a first-come, first-served basis.

Attendees also will hear from local leaders about the Gainesville Immigrant Neighbor Inclusion (GINI) Initiative, a collaborative community-wide effort designed to promote immigrant equity, inclusion, visibility, access and safety in Gainesville.

“The contributions of our foreign-born neighbors are one of the many ingredients that enrich our community. At the city, we’re working to improve immigrant access to city services, and revise our policies with language that’s inclusive of all neighbors,” said Gainesville Assistant City Manager Deborah Bowie.

Creating an equitable and inclusive community for all neighbors is a cornerstone of the city’s strategic plan.

“No matter one’s country of origin or migration story, let us become a community that welcomes our new neighbors. Day of the Immigrant is a community-wide celebration of inclusion. This event, as well as the GINI Initiative, serve to build equity in Gainesville,” said Robin Lewy, director of programming at Rural Women’s Health Project.

Co-sponsors of the event include: Rural Women’s Health Project; Project SALUD, Human Rights Coalition of Alachua County; Florida Legal Services; Greater Gainesville Chamber Anti-Hate Team; Alachua County Labor Coalition; Civic Media Center; Dream Defenders; Chispas; Interfaith Alliance for Immigrant Justice; Cultural Arts Coalition; Children Beyond our Borders, Welcoming Gainesville/Alachua; North Central Florida Social Service/Hispanic Alliance, Language Access Florida, Hybrid Translation.

For additional information, contact Robin Lewy at