The City of Philadelphia & partners will offer programming and opportunities to support immigrant communities from September 8 to17

PHILADELPHIA — The City of Philadelphia announced today that Welcoming Week will run from Friday, September 8 to Sunday, September17. Welcoming Week is a national initiative that brings together immigrants, refugees, and those born in the United States, to celebrate the contributions of neighbors of all backgrounds to build inclusive places and achieve collective prosperity.  In Philadelphia, the Office of Immigrant Affairs (OIA) helps organize events and activities across the city.

This year’s Welcoming Week will include the Celebrate Asia Festival, a visit from Little Amal, a Mural Arts tour, and a career fair, among other events curated by the Office of Immigrant Affairs and its partners that embody the theme of “Destination Belonging.”

“I’m proud of Philadelphia’s commitment to Welcoming Week for the past seven years,” said Mayor Jim Kenney. “This week highlights the vibrancy of our immigrant and refugee communities and serves as a reminder that everyone belongs in Philadelphia. We hope residents take advantage of this opportunity to celebrate all of the cultures that make up our city. I’d like to thank Comcast and Visit Philly for their sponsorship.”

“Welcoming Week is a national celebration led by our partners at Welcoming America, that honors the contributions of immigrants and recognizes that our communities are stronger —and more prosperous — when we are welcoming,“ said  Alain Joinville, Director of Strategic Communications and Programs at Philadelphia Office of Immigrant Affairs. “For over seven years, Philadelphia has shown its commitment to this national cause by coordinating events throughout the city during Welcoming Week each September. This year Philadelphia will host dozens of events that demonstrate why Philadelphia is a welcoming city.”

The Office of Immigrant Affairs believes that being a Welcoming City is much more than being friendly, tolerant or peaceful – communities need intentional, inclusive policies, practices, and norms that enable all residents to live, thrive and contribute fully. 

Residents can also support immigrant communities by contributing to the Philadelphia Welcoming Fund. Launched by the Office of Immigrant Affairs and the Mayor’s Fund for Philadelphia, the Welcoming Fund provides funding to nonprofit organizations in the Philadelphia area that support arriving asylum seekers. 

Contributions to the Philadelphia Welcoming Fund can be made on its website.  

Events scheduled for Welcoming Week 2023 include:

Celebrate Asia Festival at LOVE Park

Saturday, September 9 | 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
LOVE Park (1501 John F Kennedy Blvd.)

Celebrate Asia Festival will showcase the richness of Asian culture beyond stereotypes through food, music, and history. It highlights the diversity within the Asian continent, which consists of 48 countries.  The festival also aims to promote unity among different ethnicities.

Feria Del Barrio

Sunday, September 10 | 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
North 5th Street between Huntingdon and Somerset Streets

Feria del Barrio is the largest festival in Philadelphia presented by a coalition of organizations dedicated to promoting art, culture, education, health, economic development, and community. It is a space where artists can share their creativity and the community can come together to celebrate Latino culture.

Chasing LOVE

Thursday, September 14 | 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Begin at Rodin Museum (2151 Benjamin Franklin Parkway) and end at LOVE Park (1501 JFK Blvd.)

Follow Little Amal—a 12-foot puppet of a 10-year-old Syrian refugee girl and global symbol of human rights, especially of refugees—on a journey down the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, with Philadelphia artists, to retrieve her heart-shaped necklace. Chasing LOVE is an official City of Philadelphia Welcoming Week event presented by the City of Philadelphia Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy (OACCE) in partnership with the Office of Immigrant Affairs (OIA). The Walk will begin outside the Rodin Museum and culminate in a Global Cultural Celebration at LOVE Park with music, art making, and more. All are invited to show Amal how truly welcome she and all refugees are in Philadelphia. Attendees will receive their own paper heart necklaces and seed paper and will be invited to share them with someone else to spread the love and welcome. The event will be filmed and photographed by “THE OFFICE performing arts+film.”

Register to attend this event online here.

Learn more and download photos here.

Global Food Festival: Stories from Home 

Friday, September 15 | 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Skyline Room at Parkway Central Library (1901 Vine St., Philadelphia, PA 19103)

This multilingual program will offer an opportunity for Philadelphians from immigrant and non-immigrant communities to share and connect through their culinary traditions, including American regional food traditions, nutrition practices, and the culinary culture of Philadelphia. The event will include storytelling through the food/dishes from where attendees grew up, performances, games, and more. Register to attend this event here.  

Haitian Mural Arts Cultural Tour of Philadelphia

Saturday, September 16 | 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Begin at Shoprite (Oxford St. & Levick St.) and end in Little Haiti at 5th St. & Olney St.

The Mural Arts Cultural Pride Tour of Philadelphia will lead attendees on a bus tour of four murals created by artists in partnership with Mural Arts Philadelphia. The tour will include music, ‘Krik Krak’ style of storytelling, and food provided by Chef Scutt. 

Register to attend this event here. 

Immigrant and Refugee Career Fair
Monday, September 18 | 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
801 Market Street  

I Belong Philly and its partners will bring together a wide range of employers and organizations from around the city to meet with job seekers! Attendees will have an opportunity to network, speak with hiring managers, learn about resume building, interviewing tips, and much more.  Register to attend this event here.

To view a full list of events, visit the Welcoming Week event spotlight page online here