Navigating Immigration Services with Hope CommUnity Center

At Hope CommUnity Center in Apopka, Florida, we strive to provide the communities of Central Florida with the tools to succeed in this country. As an organization, we work daily to give Más and be a vital resource for those seeking immigration services. Whether you want to become a citizen, renew your residence, or apply for or renew DACA, the Hope CommUnity Center has you covered. 

HCC offers citizenship classes and legal assistance with the application for naturalization. To qualify for naturalization, you must: 


Be at least 18 years old at the time you file your application. 

Time as a Permanent Resident 

Be a lawful permanent resident (green card holder) for 5 years or 3 years if you are married to a U.S. citizen. 

Continuous Residence  

Demonstrate that you have continuously resided in the U.S. for the past 5 years or 3 if you are married to a U.S. citizen. Generally, USCIS evaluates extended absences based on trips of different lengths:  

  • Trips abroad for more than 6 months, but less than 1 year and  
  • Trips abroad for 1 year or more. 

Physical Presence 

Have been physically present in the U.S. for at least half of the last 5 years (913 days in the U.S.) or half of the last 3 years if you are married to a U.S. citizen (548 days in the U.S.) before applying for naturalization. 

Time living in USCIS District 

Have lived in the USCIS District, which you are applying for at least 3 months.

English Test 

Pass a test on speaking, reading, and writing basic English. 

Some people do not have to take the English test. If you are in one of the following categories, you can complete your interview and U.S. history and government test in your own language: 

  • 50 or older and have lived in the U.S. as a permanent resident for at least 20 years. 
  • 55 or older and have lived in the U.S. as a permanent resident for at least 15 years. 
  • 65 or older and have lived in the U.S. as a permanent resident for at least 20 years at the time of filing. 

Good Moral Character 

Prove that you are a person of good moral character. Committing certain crimes, offenses, acts, activities, or convictions may cause you to be ineligible for naturalization or may temporarily prevent an applicant from qualifying for citizenship for a certain period of time. 

Understand and accept the oath of allegiance to the U.S. 

Show you will support and defend the principles of the Constitution and the laws of the United States. 

Why become a U.S. Citizen? 

  • You can VOTE, run for elected office, and serve on a jury. 
  • You will be eligible for a U.S. passport, making international travel easy. 
  • You can travel outside the U.S. for unlimited periods of time and re-enter freely. 
  • You won’t have to worry about being deported or losing your lawful permanent resident status. 
  • You can sponsor family members for their green cards, including parents, spouses, children, and siblings living abroad. 
  • Your children under the age of 18 who are lawful permanent residents automatically become U.S. citizens. 
  • You can apply for government jobs that require U.S. citizenship. 
  • You can keep citizenship of another country.  

For more information about the immigration services offered at Hope CommUnity Center, visit our website at and click on the immigration tab.