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CILA’s Capacity Building Efforts Expand – CILA Hires Social Worker and Launches New Youth Page

Greetings y'all!  We hope your summer is a little less wet than our Houston summer has been, and with fewer mosquitoes.  Beyond the weather, we have exciting news to share, so here goes!

CILA is growing, and our small but mighty team now includes social worker Marissa Barrera. This has been a CILA dream for some time, and we are excited to finally begin the work. Marissa’s efforts are focused on capacity building on the social work side, in the same ways CILA has worked to build capacity on the legal side. That means she’ll be coordinating trainings, offering technical assistance, creating resources, and facilitating a social work-focused listserv and working group. Our hope is that she can help build strong ties among social workers and social services providers serving immigrant youth across Texas, and work to support them. She will be aided by a wonderful social work intern, coming soon to CILA’s team this Fall. As always, we are here to serve you, so share your ideas for social work-related trainings, your resource needs, and help guide our new efforts in the social work field.

In addition to reaching out to social workers, CILA is also reaching out to youth, and we’ve recently launched Spanish and English pages on our site to provide some basic information helpful to immigrant youth – like the right to counsel in proceedings, where to find free legal services, how to check the status of their case with EOIR or USCIS, and more. We hope to steadily grow these pages, adding useful, child and youth-friendly content to help them participate meaningfully in their immigration cases, as well as access resources in their communities. If you have any helpful information you would like us to share, or ideas for information you’d like us to prepare and post, reach out and let us know. And in the meantime, please help us share our page with the youth you know, or anyone working with immigrant youth who may benefit from the information provided.