October 22-28, 2023 is the National Celebration of Pro Bono—a week dedicated to uplifting and acknowledging all of the amazing work being done by pro bono attorneys and the staff supporting them at legal service providers.
Thank you to everyone who dedicates their time and care to helping a child. This year, CILA’s celebrations for pro bono attorneys working with immigrant children include releasing an updated version of its Pro Bono Guide (stay tuned for more information coming soon!) and hosting a free training earlier in the month on “Introduction to Trauma-Informed Interviewing for Pro Bono Attorneys Working with Immigrant Children” (check out the recording and materials here!)
Your pro bono work matters. Nearly half of the unaccompanied children in removal proceedings do not have representation, according to data from the Executive Office for Immigration Review. Children need help navigating the complex and confusing legal system, and pro bono attorneys are essential for closing the gap in representation. Having someone with them in immigration court could change a child’s life. Data shows that children with representation are more likely to receive legal relief.
Get involved! For those interested in taking a case, CILA’s platform—Pro Bono Matters for Children Facing Deportation—features opportunities nationwide to help a child in need of pro bono representation. Opportunities are available for attorneys as well as law students and volunteers without a law license. Read more about the platform here. You can also learn more about the issues and ways to get connected on CILA’s Get Involved webpage.
CILA is here to support your pro bono efforts. As a capacity building organization, CILA supports attorneys, pro bono coordinators, legal staff, and social workers through trainings, legal technical assistance, social services technical assistance, collaboration, and resource creation. Check out CILA’s website to learn more!
In addition to providing trainings and resources for pro bono attorneys, CILA’s Creative Pro Bono Models webpage showcases expert tips, ideas, and resources for pro bono programs. CILA and the ABA’s Commission on Immigration also recently hosted the first Pro Bono Symposium to facilitate learning about pro bono program management and to feature advocates working in pro bono programs across the nation. Please reach out to us at email@example.com if you are at a legal service provider and would like to learn more about these resources or to share your experience.