“By the end of the summer, I hope to learn more about IIBA’s fundraising efforts and how to craft a legal argument for a case,” says Peter. He connected with IIBA through the San Francisco Social Impact Internship Program at Dartmouth College, where he is an undergraduate student.
“IIBA staff always kept me updated on the status of my case and made me feel secure,” says Amelia Hernandez. She appreciates that sense of security more than ever after her nightmarish journey to the U.S.
Diamante is the Legal Outreach Coordinator at IIBA’s Redwood City office and educates the immigrant community on their constitutional rights. She also works on diverse immigration cases and coordinates the DACA program. Diamante chose IIBA because she is passionate about advocating for the immigrant community.
Frustrated by the anti-immigrant rhetoric of last year’s presidential election, Jennifer Boyle decided to stand up and take action. She was intent on supporting the immigrant community, so she contacted IIBA Board President Jennifer Beckett seeking volunteer opportunities.
“I’m thrilled to be joining IIBA as a Staff Attorney and Pro-Bono coordinator,” says Valentina Ozbek. In addition to providing immigration legal services to our clients, Valentina will be working with major technology companies and law firms to advance our pro-bono program and broaden our mission of empowering and serving the immigrant community in the Bay Area.
IIBA client Clara Blanco-Herrada embodies the phrase, "Where there's a will, there's a way." With the devaluation of the Mexican peso, in the mid-1990s, Clara's life turned upside down. Her family lost their business and property in the recession, so they immigrated to the U.S., in search of new opportunities.
When Stephen Filios is not teaching Foundations of Science for Brigham Young University Idaho’s online program, hevolunteers in IIBA’s citizenship preparation classes. “I have always had an interest in working with people from different cultures,” says Stephen, so he stepped up to teach IIBA’s San Francisco class in the Tenderloin, attended primarily by Arab women.
IIBA staff attorney Sara MacPherson recently traveled to the Dilley, Texas Detention Center. As a volunteer with the CARA project Her role was to conduct “credible fear determinations”. This process allows an individual to provide information which can help establish they have suffered persecution or have a well-founded fear of persecution were they to return to their home country.
During the presidential election, IIBA client Sarah A. closely followed the nominees' stances on immigration. Sensing unrest, she began the citizenship application process. The daughter of Yemeni parents, Sarah lived in the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom before moving to the U.S., where she lives with her husband and children, who are U.S. citizens.
Javier is the first member of his family to graduate from college, with a degree in criminal justice from San Jose State University, and plans of becoming a police officer one day. His aspirations of protecting and serving his community stem from the many struggles he faced growing up.