Jessica & Nifte Immigration Assistance Fellowship

    FLS T-shirt (front)              FLS T-shirt (back)
                                                                    

TODOS TIENEN DERECHOS


Farmworker Legal Services and the Immigration Assistance Program have teamed up to raise funds for the Jessica & Nifte Fellowship.  IAP sells t-shirts (shown above) that exemplify the motto that Jessica and Nifte strived to achieve: "Todos Tienen Derechos" (Everyone Has Rights).  The FLS logo appears on the back of the t-shirt.

"Todos" t-shirts are available in toddler (2T, 3T, 4T) and adult sizes (S, M, L, XL, XXL).  To order a t-shirt please call either FLS (269-492-7190) or IAP (269-385-1019), or contact FLS by email at fls@lsscm.org.  All sizes are sold for $20; all proceeds are applied to the Jessica & Nifte Fellowship.

December 2014 Update: At this time we only have toddler sizes (in navy blue) and adult XXL shirts (in navy blue and olive green).   We will update this page when we are able to order additional shirts.

THE FELLOWSHIP

 

The Jessica & Nifte Immigration Assistance Fellowship has been established at the Diocese of Kalamazoo Immigration Assistance Program to honor the memory of Jessica Lowery Castro and Nifte Granados.  These young women were assisting migrant workers through their employment as outreach workers for Farmworker Legal Services when they were in a fatal car crash in 1999.  They were both pursuing college educations to enable them to fulfill their shared dream of providing legal assistance to migrant workers and other immigrants.  This fellowship will carry on their dreams by helping to fund an intern position to support the professional staff of the Immigration Assistance Program in assisting immigrants in obtaining lawful residence, work authorization and citizenship in the United States.

A dedicated fund has been established at the Diocese of Kalamazoo Immigration Assistance Program (IAP), which began as a collaborative effort of Farmworker Legal Services, pro bono immigration lawyers, and permanent staff who assist clients in understanding their legal rights and the complex system of immigration.  The fellowship funds will be used in conjunction with other available funding (such as federal work-study funding) to provide a rotating internship opportunity that will be both educational to the intern and beneficial to the community.  A major objective is to provide an opportunity for area students who, like Jessica and Nifte, have expressed a desire to learn to effectively assist migrants through the immigration process.

Fellowship guidelines and criteria for selecting interns are determined in consultation with an advisory committee that includes members of Jessica and Nifte’s families, representatives of area high schools and institutions of higher education, and legal service providers.  To be eligible to receive a fellowship stipend for interning with the IAP, an area student must be a high school graduate with a passion for helping the migrant or immigrant community in Michigan.  Prospective fellows must submit an application form, a current transcript, a personal essay demonstrating a commitment to community service, documents evidencing such commitment (such as copies of awards, commendations, newspaper articles, etc.), and two letters supporting the applicant’s relevant experience and stated commitment.  Preference in awarding stipends may be based on candidates’ fluency in a relevant second language, as well as full-time status in an area college.  Selected fellows will volunteer 15 to 20 hours per week for terms of 8 to 10 weeks each in exchange for their awarded stipend, and must maintain good academic standing throughout.

 

For more information about the Fellowship, contact:

 

Tom Thornburg, Co-Managing Attorney
Farmworker Legal Services
3030 S. 9th St. Suite 1A
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
Tel: (269) 492-7190

 

Maura Hagen, Director
Immigration Assistance Program
215 N. Westnedge Ave.
Kalamazoo, MI 49007
Tel: (269) 385-1019

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