Julie Schwietert Collazo

Julie Schwietert Collazo is the co-founder and director of Immigrant Families Together (IFT), a non-profit organization founded in response to the zero tolerance policy that resulted in the separation of thousands of immigrant parents and their children at the U.S.-Mexico border in 2018. She brings her background as a bilingual journalist and former social worker and creative arts therapist to bear on her work with IFT, which raised more than a million dollars in just over six months and has raised more than three million to date, posting bond for 126 detained parents, grandparents, and older siblings who were separated from children. The ongoing work of IFT involves providing support to these families — housing, legal counsel, medical/dental/mental health care, and other necessities — as they proceed with their immigration cases, and to provide material and logistical support to border partners and to individuals currently in detention centers. Her work with IFT has been recognized by the New York State Senate and has been entered into the U.S. Congressional Record by Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. She was named one of FWD.US‘s 2019 Keeping Families Together champions and received Emory University’s 2021 Women of Excellence Award. She is co-author of The Book of Rosy, which was published in English and Spanish by HarperOne and HarperCollins Español in June 2020, and was named by Kirkus as one of the best non-fiction books of 2020.

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