Year in Review: Esperanza Immigration Legal Services & Damara’s Story

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At Esperanza, we are committed to supporting the needs of immigrants.

Esperanza Immigration Legal Services (EILS) was formed in 2009.  The mission of EILS is to provide community education, advocacy and direct legal services to immigrants and their families, so that they may participate in and benefit fully from American society. The local, grassroots work of EILS is closely related to the work of Esperanza’s campaign to support passage of comprehensive immigration reform on a regional and national level.  

While we like to talk about the big picture changes that need to occur, it’s important to talk about the individuals directly affected by immigration policies and the work at Esperanza. It’s not just expert services but trust between a legal professional and their client that leads to success stories that we see unfold before us every day.

Damara is one of our clients who moved from Mexico City when she was only 8 years old. She began working at an early age to help her family, but she knew education was a huge part of being able to start a stable career. Because she was not a citizen, she couldn’t apply for financial aid, get a driver’s license and couldn’t work in many places. With the help of EILS Executive Director Mary Clark, she was able to apply for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals provision that put her on the path to citizenship. Watch the full story below!