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Offering Hope by Reuniting Families

*Names are changed to protect the identity of the client.

The DC Bar Foundation is proud to fund DC legal services organizations that support and uplift immigrant communities. In 2021, the DC Bar Foundation awarded CARECEN DC an Access to Justice grant to provide outreach and legal services for immigrants in DC.

CARECEN DC’s mission is to foster the comprehensive development of the Latino population by providing direct services while promoting grassroots empowerment, civic engagement, and human rights advocacy. Since 1981, CARECEN has facilitated the transition process for immigrants to an integrated life in their new home and equips them to plan an essential role in advancing the community. Read on to learn about how CARECEN supported one of their clients, Eduardo*, in an attempt to reunite with his family.

Eduardo came to the US in 2007 from El Salvador to find work to support his family. Shortly after arriving in the US, he was violently beaten, hospitalized for eight months, and in a coma for nearly six months. Eduardo was left permanently disabled by the brain injury that resulted from the attack. Fortunately, his parents managed to become permanent US residents and have been able to take care of his affairs and daily care.

Though Eduardo managed to secure permanent residency and spent the last 14 years rehabilitating in the US, he has been living apart from his partner and children, who still reside in El Salvador. In 2018, he was finally well enough to travel home to marry his partner and see his children. In April 2020, his wife and children were granted immigration family petitions, and Eduardo got his first glimmer of hope for imminent reunification with his family. In November 2020, Eduardo finally collected the necessary documents to help his family apply for immigrant visas. In December, CARECEN gave Eduardo a full fee waiver to process the case for his family, and their case processing has been given the highest priority. Thanks in large part to CARECEN’s financial support, Eduardo can now see the light at the end of the tunnel and has hope that after 13 years, he can reunite with his family.

To learn more about the DC Bar Foundation’s grantees, please visit our website.


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