Emergency Funding for Three Immigration Providers

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TIGARD, OR. The Oregon Law Foundation (OLF) on Wednesday approved an emergency grant to several non-profit organizations wrestling with increased demand for help in immigration matters.

The OLF released $100,000 to Immigration Counseling Services (ICS), SOAR Immigration Legal Services, and Catholic Charities Legal Services. The three organizations offer distinct services, but have collaborated in areas of high need, and are working together to respond to rapidly evolving changes in federal policy, and dramatic increases in those seeking help.

In addition to providing legal help to individuals and families, these organizations are seeing sharp increases in demand for guidance from church groups, health care systems, schools and other social services organizations about how they can serve their immigrant communities.

“This has been a remarkably turbulent time for the immigrant community, and for those touched by our immigrant population,” says OLF Director Judith Baker. “Providers are having to meet growing demand while responding to a constantly shifting legal environment. This is exactly why we have provisions in place for emergency grants.”

This week’s emergency grant is in addition to those approved to two of the three organizations during the regular grant cycle last year, and before the national election.

The OLF is a charitable foundation that distributes funds to organizations that help the poor obtain access to legal services, and to those that support understanding of the rule of law. It distributes grants solely within Oregon, totaling more than $1 million annually. It is funded largely through interest generated on lawyer trust accounts, and through a partnership with Oregon banks. Leadership banks, in particular, provide vital support to the foundation.