The day the ICE raids were supposed to begin, Laura Pontius spoke to a group of immigrants who were gathered in a Catholic Church to learn about their legal rights and the most recent changes to immigration law. After her presentation, a man approached her and the priest. She recalls that the man was visibly afraid, but he had a message to share. “All of my family and friends are really scared about what’s going to happen,” he told her. “It brings us a lot of peace that there are people out there thinking about how we’re feeling and about how we might need certain resources right now.” As he spoke, Laura was struck by how many times the man thanked her. Again and again, he expressed his gratitude that members of the community cared about what happened to him and his family. Read More
As a young girl, Jordan Huttenlocker dreamed of being a veterinarian. Over the years, however, her ambitions shifted, and she eventually became a lawyer, practicing medical malpractice defense. For a time, this was the perfect marriage of her interests. But after eight years of working as a full-time attorney at a large firm in Chicago, Jordan and her husband decided to move back to Ft. Wayne. Jordan took a step back from her career to focus on raising their two small children. Soon, however, she sought part-time employment again. “I realized I really did miss practicing law,” she says. Read More
Babra has spent much of her career working with vulnerable communities, even before coming to the United States. As an immigrant herself, she has faced many challenges that continue to influence and confirm for her that she is in the right place with the Clinic now. “My faith leads the work I do because that is my source of strength each day,” she says. “I remind myself every day that God … uplifts our spirits and others and that our faith in him provides guidance and answers where we are challenged.” Babra loves to serve clients and is currently working toward becoming an Accredited Representative so that she can assist with immigration proceedings in the future. Read More
Chris, Ashley, and Cassandra are brainstorming strategies for going against FACE Low-Cost Animal Clinic in Round 1 of Brackets For Good 2018--and they have a theory on why their opponent is so competitive. Read More
Associated Churches first became acquainted with the Clinic through their mutual service. “Because we serve a diverse population, the Clinic was already doing ministry in the same places that we were,” says Roger. “We were providing emergency food relief for the food bank and the Clinic was providing intake at the same location.” This put the Legal Clinic on Associated Churches’ radar, and thus, a new relationship was borne.
Sui Tlang* was first referred to the Clinic through several different partner agencies that were already working with her. As a young girl living in Burma, she was orphaned and grew up in a refugee camp near Thailand. While in the camp, she received little education and never learned to read or write in her native language. No one ever even tried to teach her English. When she got older, she was married and had two sons, but was soon widowed.
The month of May was chock full of fun events, like Law Trivia Night and Jazz for Justice! We also released the second episode of our new podcast, Courting Justice (available now on iTunes), in which we discussed the special considerations one should make when assisting and working with victims of violent trauma. We look forward to the beginning of July when we'll release episode 3!
As our nation celebrated Independence Day this month, our blog highlighted the various kinds of Freedom that we pursue for ourselves and for one another. We bonded together as a staff team at an Indians baseball game. On the blog, we learned more about The Julian Center and their commitment to protecting victims of domestic violence and assault, giving them the opportunity to move forward in their lives, free from fear.
When asked why they chose a race, Desiree says, “There’s nobody else in legal aid doing that kind of an awareness campaign.” And moreover, she explains, it is simply a fun event. She says, “[Running] is such an electrifying experience; I’ve not had too many people that have walked it and been part of that and got to finish, and not said ‘I want to do this next year.’”