Dozens of Dreamers Came Together Over 36 Hours to Build Tools and Apps to Empower, Encourage Immigrants and Americans Impacted by the U.S.’ Broken Immigration System

LOS ANGELES, CA – This weekend, roughly 40 Dreamers from across the United States convened in Los Angeles for the country’s first-ever immigrant youth-led hackathon, just days after President Trump decided to end the DACA program. Called “UndocuHacks 2017,” the event brought together professionals in the tech industry, community leaders, advocates, and others personally affected by immigration policies for 36 hours of consecutive hacking to develop digital tools for protection, education, and organizing.

Participants helped create tools to address our country’s broken immigration system, assist with deportation defense and fuel rapid response efforts, and devised ways to make health services more accessible to the immigrant community. Among the tools created were an app to connect volunteers with immigration-servicing organizations and an app to help with DACA renewals. Another team also created a tool to connect immigrants to educational scholarships, legal aid and health aid.

The hackathon was intended to provide an opportunity for attendees to share their skills and develop technology tools of protection, education, healing, and empowerment. Sixteen mentors — all entrepreneurs, tech leaders or angel investors — were also on site to provide assistance and support every step of the way to help bring developed ideas into reality.

The hackathon was held just days after President Trump decided to eliminate the DACA program, which will cost the United States $460 billion in GDP loss over the next decade and comes with far-reaching moral consequences. No new DACA applications are being accepted, but DACA recipients whose renewals expire on or before March 5 can submit renewal applications through October 5.

The hackathon was sponsored by UndocuMedia,, the Latino Coalition for a Healthy California (LCHC), Mi Mentor, UCLA Dream Resource Center, Techqueria, Codesmith, SUBB and Enplug.

📝 About the author

Frances was a volunteer/staff member for Techqueria from April 2018 to May 2022. She previously served as a Technology Director, Executive Director, and Board Member/Advisor.