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Welcoming Immigrants to Our Community

A Glance at 2015 “One of the traditions at JFON-NE staff meetings is to share the ‘mission moments’ that acknowledge the impact of our work on the clients we serve. Nothing is more uplifting than hearing that, through our work, our clients are safe, more financially stable, and engaged in our community.“ – Emiliano

DEAR FRIENDS Justice For Our Neighbors-Nebraska (JFON-NE) strives to empower immigrants to bring about systematic change through active participation in our community. The exceptional leadership embodied by our Board of Directors steers us toward that goal, supported by an outstanding team of professionals committed to accountability. In 2015 we focused on three strategic directives: • Expand JFON-NE’s organizational capacity; • Refine and enhance program initiatives; and • Promote JFON-NE’s success. Our capacity to deliver services grew substantially, thanks to generous support from local funders that allowed us to add six new legal staff. Our partnership with Completely KIDS positioned our Child Welfare Attorneys to rapidly respond to an acute rise in family casework. Our new Access to Justice Attorney worked side-by-side with law enforcement agencies to streamline procedures and obtain safety and independence for victims of domestic violence. Foundation grants allowed us to expand geographically by adding full-time attorneys in Lexington, Nebraska, and at the Centro Latino of Council Bluffs, Iowa. The endorsement and philanthropic support of our community is vital to JFON-NE’s evolving capacity. We are inspired by the confidence of our donors, noted on pages 15 and 16, and we dedicate our work to fulfilling our shared vision of better lives for immigrants. In December, we received a three-year grant from the Weitz Family Foundation for an employment law partnership with Heartland Workers Center. While maintaining our focus on immigration legal services, 1


more holistically. Guided by a data-driven business plan and


professional consultants, we are assessing ways we can enable

Athena Ramos Chair

our clients to more fully engage in their communities. Every day, we see how the resolution of legal issues like family law, fair working conditions, and access to health care can turn our clients’ lives around, helping to lift families out of poverty and empower

Beverly Reicks Chair-elect Sarah (Sally) McGill Secretary

individuals to influence positive systemic change.

Daniel Padilla Treasurer

We are delighted to report that JFON-NE was honored by the

Mary Lee Fitzsimmons Immediate Past Co-chair

Women’s Fund of Omaha with its 2015 Excellence in Service to Women Award for our work with immigrant victims of domestic

Melissa Baron

violence and their children, and by the Omaha Bar Association

Toni Demetria Smith

with its 2015 Public Service Award. In turn, we honor you—our corporate and family foundations, individual donors, board and program volunteers, and event sponsors—by pledging meticulous stewardship of your investment in our important work. Thank you for making it possible for us to welcome our

Bernadette Tate Mary Umberger 2016 BOARD OF DIRECTORS

newest neighbors to Nebraska and southwest Iowa!

Beverly Reicks Chair


Sarah (Sally) McGill Chair-elect Melissa Baron Secretary Daniel Padilla Treasurer Athena Ramos Immediate Past Chair Mary Lee Fitzsimmons Nick Brotzel

Athena Ramos, Chair

Beverly Reicks, Chair-elect

Emiliano Lerda, J.D., LL.M.

Board of Directors

Board of Directors

Executive Director

Toni Demetria Smith Bernadette Tate Mary Umberger

P.S. Did you attend our brand-new fundraiser, enVISION 2015: Food Truck World Tour? If you did, thanks! You helped us raise $121,000. Please save Oct. 6, 2016, at the Slowdown for more food trucks and fun.

Emiliano Lerda, J.D., LL.M. Executive Director

D e d i c a t e d t o K e e p i n g F a m i l i e s To g e t h e r

JFON-NE is also exploring similar partnerships to serve our clients


About Justice For Our Neighbors-Nebraska Justice For Our Neighbors-Nebraska (JFON-NE) is a nonprofit organization welcoming immigrants into our communities by providing free, high-quality immigration legal services, education, and advocacy for low-income individuals and families in Nebraska and southwest Iowa. We serve immigrants of all faiths, races, abilities,

The mission of Justice For Our Neighbors-Nebraska (JFON-NE) is to welcome immigrants into our community by providing free, high-quality immigration legal services, education, and advocacy.

and ages, with an emphasis on the most vulnerable–victims of domestic violence, abused and abandoned children, and those fleeing persecution. Our attorneys are all educated and experienced in general immigration law practice with specialties in domestic abuse, child welfare, and refugee and asylum law. With legal clinic sites in Omaha, Grand Island, Lexington, and Council Bluffs, JFON-NE is part of National Justice For Our Neighbors (NJFON), a national network of legal clinics originally founded by the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR). Today JFON-NE is supported by the generosity of the Great Plains Conference of the United Methodist Church, NJFON and many local corporate and family foundations.

A CALL TO ACTION From refugees fleeing persecution in the Middle East to women and children facing violence in Central America, the world is witnessing one of the most extensive refugee crises in history. As a nation of immigrants, it is incumbent upon us to honor the values and principles on which this country was founded. Please voice your support for an active U.S. refugee program.


2015 Collaborative Partners STATE OF NEBRASKA American Civil Liberties Union Anti-Defamation League Center for Rural Affairs Courts Matter Coalition of Nebraska Legal Aid of Nebraska Lutheran Family Services Nebraska Appleseed Nebraska Association for Translators & Interpreters Nebraska Coalition for Immigration Reform Nebraska Cultural Unity Conference Nebraska Immigration Legal Assistance Hotline (NILAH) Nebraska State Bar Association University of Nebraska Kearney Multicultural Affairs Office Volunteer Lawyers Project of the Nebraska Bar Association Columbus, NE Columbus First United Methodist Church Centro Hispano Comunitario de Nebraska Crete, NE Blue River Family Center Crete Public Schools Grace United Methodist Church United Church of Christ, First Congregational Grand Island, NE Crisis Center Inc. Multicultural Coalition of Grand Island Saint Mary’s Immigration Program Trinity United Methodist Church Hastings, NE Hastings Multicultural Association Lexington, NE First United Methodist Church/ Nuevo Pacto United Methodist Hispanic Ministry

Lincoln, NE Center for Legal Immigration Assistance El Centro de las Americas University of Nebraska Law School North Platte, NE First Evangelical Lutheran Church Omaha, NE Alegent Health BoysTown Catholic Charities College of Saint Mary Completely KIDS Comunidad Maya Pixan Ixim Creighton Center for Service and Justice Creighton Law School Creighton Multicultural Center at Creighton University Domestic Violence Council First United Methodist Church/ Urban Abbey Grace United Methodist Church Heart Ministry Center Heartland Workers Center Immigrant Detainee Accompaniment Program Intercultural Senior Center Latino Center of the Midlands Lutheran Family Services Nonprofit Association of the Midlands Office of Latino and Latin American Studies (OLLAS) at the University of Nebraska-Omaha Omaha Metro Community College Omaha Public Schools Omaha Together One Community One World Community Health Centers Open Door Mission Project Harmony Refugee Empowerment Center Siena Francis House Sisters of Mercy St. James United Methodist Church of Bellevue

St. Paul United Methodist Church University of Nebraska Medical Center University of Nebraska-Omaha Women’s Center for Advancement Youth Emergency Services South Sioux City, NE Saint Michael Catholic Church St. Paul United Methodist Church Unity In Action STATE OF IOWA Legal Aid of Western Iowa Iowa Justice For Our Neighbors Council Bluffs, IA Centro Latino of Council Bluffs Heartland Family Service Sioux City, IA Mary Treglia Community House Unity In Action NATIONAL American Immigration Council American Immigration Lawyers Association Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. National Immigration Project UNITED METHODIST PARTNERS General Board of Church and Society General Board of Global Ministries Great Plains United Methodist Conference Great Plains United Methodist Mercy & Justice Team/ Micah Corps National Justice For Our Neighbors United Methodist Committee on Relief United Methodist Women (National & Great Plains) Individual United Methodist churches are listed with their cities.




JFON-NE is a nonprofit immigration legal service provider

• Asylum

specializing in domestic violence, child welfare, and refugee

• Refugee

and asylum law. We are known for handling complex cases

• Family-based immigration

that may have multiple solutions. Our immigration legal

• Removal/Deportation defense

service teams’ comprehensive knowledge of immigration

• Special Immigrant Juvenile (SIJ) Status

law provides the expertise to know which option is the best for individual clients.

(including state family law matters) • U-Visa (including labor and employment law matters) • Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)



JFON-NE offers a variety of educational presentations in

• Services provided by JFON-NE

order to help welcome our newest neighbors to Nebraska and

• Immigration Law Basics

southwest Iowa and to provide accurate information on the

• U-Visa and VAWA (For victims of

current federal immigration system. We offer presentations

domestic abuse/violent crime)

for immigrants, non-immigrants, professionals, and groups at

• U-Visa: A Tool for Law Enforcement

institutions of higher learning. In 2015, JFON-NE conducted

• Executive Action: Expanded Deferred

114 presentations reaching 2,990 individuals.

Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA)




JFON-NE advocates, in collaboration with partnering

• Impact Litigation

organizations, for fundamental changes in the laws at the

• Issue Analysis/Research

local, state, and federal level that make it safe and lawful for

• Legal Action

immigrant community members to stay, work, and live in the

• Media Advocacy/Public Awareness

United States. In our 2014 three-year strategic plan, our board

• Coalition Building/Networking

of directors and leadership identified seven advocacy initiatives.

• Policy Analysis/Research • Assure Good Policy Implementation

Client Demographics SERVED

Females 52.5%


Males 47.5%

Council Rural Bluffs/ Nebraska SW Iowa 18.49% 16.14% Omaha 53.95%

Lexington 4.33% Grand Island 6.74%



50+ Years 7.4%

30-49 Years 35.7%

Birth – 2 Years 1% 3-12 Years 9% 13-18 Years 22% 19-29 Years 24.9%


(Percent of federal poverty level) 150 – 175% 1.48% 125 – 150% 5.27%

175 –200% 1.65% 200% .82%



100 –125% 22.73% Less than 100% 68.05%





We continue to pioneer innovative and cutting-edge

We were awarded a grant from National Justice For

legal strategies to achieve lasting solutions for our

Our Neighbors (NJFON) to spearhead high-impact

clients. As a result, we are constantly evolving to

litigation for the nationwide JFON network. As part

serve their increasingly complex legal needs. Last

of our effective advocacy efforts, we will strategically

year, we advanced our collaboration partnership

choose a select number of cases to litigate that

with Completely KIDS to better meet the needs of

have the potential to create positive precedent for

children and families. Presently, we are developing

immigrants and hold the government accountable for

a new employment law partnership with Heartland

unlawful practices. Our client stories in this report

Worker’s Center.

illustrate the high quality of our legal services and the dedicated advocacy of our legal staff. Read the client stories in this report to see how these cases impact their lives.

RURAL INCLUSION Rural Inclusion: Fostering Engaged and Welcoming Communities, funded by the Sherwood Foundation, promotes community-led growth of immigration


legal services throughout rural Nebraska, with

We were honored to support the efforts of the

Lexington, and Grand Island. JFON-NE has

Young Nebraskans in Action (YNA) through a

dedicated three immigration legal service providers

successful collaborative advocacy initiative that

to collaborate with Nebraska Appleseed, Heartland

contributed to last year’s passage of Legislative

Workers Center, Center for Rural Affairs and

Bill 623. This law now allows recipients of Deferred

Centro Hispano Comunitario de Nebraska of

Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) (youth

Columbus. We are building inclusivity for under-

brought into the U.S. as children) to obtain

represented community members, establishing local

Nebraska driver’s licenses. Until its passage,

connections, and identifying resources to build more

Nebraska was the only state in the nation to deny

capacity for immigration legal services where there

DACA youth the ability to obtain a driver’s license.

are few or none available.

JFON-NE provided technical/legal consultation and support for YNA grassroots efforts, and joined forces with many community-based organizations to support the proposed law. 7

a JFON-NE presence in South Sioux City, Crete,

2015 Program Highlights NEW IOWA OFFICE JFON-NE expanded immigration legal services

study entitled, Women’s Voices: Latinas, Intimate

to low-income individuals and families residing

Partner Violence and Immigration Policy (U-Visa).

in southwest Iowa through a full-time presence

The first of its kind, this study offers significant

at El Centro Latino of Council Bluffs and weekly

recommendations for a local community response

immigration law consultations at Heartland Family

to improve victim safety.

Service. Our goal was to work 150 cases in 2015; however, the need was great and we provided free immigration legal services for more than


200 cases for clients from Council Bluffs and

In 2014, we received seed funding from the Fund for

southwest Iowa. Our Iowa operations would not

Omaha grant, a program of the Omaha Community

be possible without the generous support of the

Foundation, for a pro bono Attorney of the Day

Iowa West Foundation.

program for non-detained juvenile respondents in removal proceedings in immigration court. In 2015, we were able to scale up this program to


position ourselves to respond to the “surge” of

Thanks to seed funding from the Lozier Foundation,

unaccompanied children crossing U.S. borders.

JFON-NE New Nebraskans Mural Project added a

Because of this program, virtually every child

part-time Access to Justice Attorney to work with

appearing before the Omaha Immigration Court

law enforcement, prosecutors and social service

has had the opportunity to be represented by

providers to address obstacles that prevent victims

an attorney. This program is now a permanent

of domestic violence from obtaining needed services

component of our services thanks to the generous

and participating in the criminal justice system.

support of the Sherwood Foundation and local

JFON-NE staff co-authored an in-depth, qualitative

private immigration attorneys.

NEW NEBRASKANS MURAL PROJECT Our thanks goes to celebrated artist Watie White, who partnered with JFON-NE on a three-year New Nebraskans project to show the common humanity and diverse faces of immigration in Omaha today. Six large outdoor murals are painted on buildings in Omaha neighborhoods, fostering public conversations of immigrant contributions. See more photos in our Facebook album. 8

Asya’s Story

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AFFECTS THE ENTIRE FAMILY Together with other community services, immigration legal services can help make the family whole again.

Asya, from Kenya, was brought into the U.S. in 1997 with her parents when she was just three years old. Two years later Asya was thrilled when her sister, Busara, was born. The sisters were inseparable. EVERYTHING CHANGED IN AN INSTANT At the age of 21, Asya married Daniel, a Canadian citizen. They lived with her parents and had two children. Asya and Busara, 16 years old, were as close as ever. But everything changed the day Asya came home to see her husband violently raping Busara. Daniel ran out the door at the interruption. They called the police. Busara and her parents were taken to Project Harmony, where sexual assault services began immediately.


Busara was born in the U.S., and therefore was a U.S. citizen; however, reporting the crime put Asya and her parents at risk for deportation. Project Harmony contacted JFON-NE for immigration solutions. Our Domestic Violence attorney advised the parents that if they cooperated in the investigation of the crime, they may be able to access a form of status that would allow them to remain in the U.S. The parents wanted to bring Daniel to justice and eagerly assisted the police in the investigation of the crime throughout the entire process. Meanwhile, the JFON-NE attorney assisted Asya and her parents to apply for a U-Visa. In 2015, Daniel was convicted of two separate counts of sexual assault of a minor and sentenced to 15 to 20 years in prison. ASYA WAS A SECONDARY VICTIM Asya was terribly distraught that her own husband had injured Busara in such a violent act. Three months after the attack, Asya attempted suicide. As a secondary victim of the assault—as was the entire family— Asya entered intensive therapy at Lutheran Family Services to cope with the trauma. The possibility of obtaining a U-Visa and work permit was an important factor in her recovery. In October 2015, more than three years after the assault, Asya and her parents were granted U-Visas and work permits. Asya finally felt vindicated. COLLABORATION COUNTS

Recovery from traumatic events requires multi-layered approaches. Cooperation among agencies strengthens the likelihood of a positive outcome.

The trauma this family faced has long-lasting effects. The services they received from the collaboration of the community agencies is helping them to recover. They brought Daniel to justice, Asya found peace, and they no longer live in the shadows because of their legal status.


Thanda and Wunna’s Story


A JFON-NE team effort opens a new avenue of relief for Nebraska’s abused, abandoned, and neglected children.

Special Immigrant Juvenile (SIJ) Status is a pathway to permanent residency for children who have been abused, abandoned, or neglected by one or both of their parents. For many years in the State of Nebraska this option was only open to children who had been mistreated by both of their parents. Although contrary to federal law and rulings by other states, children in Nebraska who still had one supportive parent in their life were left without options for relief. In 2015, the JFON-NE Legal Team developed a strategy that changed the outcome for these children. LEFT IN THEIR GRANDFATHER’S CARE Thanda and Wunna are ten- and twelve-year-old siblings from Burma. When Thanda, the younger of the two children, was only a few months old, their father abandoned his children and their mother 11

and disappeared from their lives. Forced into single parenthood, their mother came to the United States to find a way to support her children alone. She left Thanda and Wunna in Burma with their grandfather. However, when their grandfather’s health began to fail rapidly, their mother made arrangements to bring the children to the U.S. to reunite with her. CAUGHT AT THE BORDER After making the long, arduous journey to the U.S., Thanda and Wunna were apprehended and placed into the custody of the Office of Refugee Resettlement. Although eventually reunited with their mother, the children were placed into removal proceedings and faced the risk of being deported to Burma without their mother. In most other states, Thanda and Wunna would have had a clear pathway to SIJ status, so their JFON-NE attorneys tried a new strategy in Nebraska by filing custody action for their mother. The court entered findings saying Thanda and Wunna had been abandoned by their father and it was in the children’s best interest to remain with their mother in the U.S. With this order, JFON-NE attorneys helped the children apply for SIJ status

The creativity of an experienced immigration team can uncover novel solutions to keep families together.

and it was granted only a few short weeks later. Now the children can live safe, full lives in the loving care of their mother. THE CHILD CUSTODY CASE WORKED This child custody victory opened up a new pathway to relief for potentially hundreds of immigrant children in Nebraska who have been abused, abandoned, or neglected by one, but not both, of their parents.


Sibrian Family Story



A lawsuit filed against federal agency holds the government accountable for denial of immigration benefits.

Jose Sibrian, a citizen of El Salvador, had lawfully resided in the U.S. with his wife and four children since early 2000 in valid Temporary Protected Status. He and his family had patiently waited in line for nearly 13 years for a familybased visa to become available through a petition filed by Jose’s U.S. citizen sister. While waiting for this visa, the family had been actively contributing to their community. They had volunteered with local non-profits, participated in their church, and established themselves as hard-working individuals. All of the Sibrian children had been academically successful: each had graduated from high school, and each had earned many accolades in college and

This complex

graduate school. They were exemplary residents of our community.

family case


required a

Thus, the family was shocked to learn that their applications for permanent residence status might be denied, due to the ineffective assistance of counsel Jose had received in the 1990s during an earlier visit to the U.S. that resulted in his being ordered deported from the country. The complexity of the case had deterred several other service providers, all who had turned the family away. JFON-NE, however, accepted the cases, convinced that Jose and his family were eligible to obtain permanent residence. The United States Citizenship

federal complaint that stands strong on legal grounds against a deportation order.

and Immigration Services (USCIS), as expected, resisted granting the petition and issued a final denial late in 2014 for the entire family. FEDERAL COMPLAINT FILED Undaunted, JFON-NE filed a federal lawsuit against the Department of Homeland Security and USCIS in the U.S. District Court for the District of Nebraska. Sibrian Menjivar et al v. Johnson et al, No 8:15CV139 (D. Neb. 2015). In our complaint, we asserted that the federal government had unlawfully and unconstitutionally denied Jose and his family’s applications for permanent residence. Finally, after months of tense negotiations with Justice Department lawyers, JFON-NE was thrilled to announce that Jose, his wife, and their four children were all granted permanent residence last September. Now the family need no longer fear eventual removal from the U.S.; rather, they are on a path to becoming U.S. citizens. 14

We at JFON-NE are humbled by the generous support of you, our donors. We pledge to honor your confidence in our important work with our thoughtful consideration of your investment.

FOUNDATIONS & GRANTS Anonymous Anonymous Community Services Fund of Nebraska Domestic Violence Council Great Plains Conference/ United Methodist Church Holland Foundation IA/NE Chapter American Immigration Lawyers Association Iowa West Foundation Legal Aid of NE Lozier Foundation Mammel Foundation National Justice For Our Neighbors - (NJFON) Nebraska Commission on Public Advocacy (NCOPA) Omaha Community Foundation Peter Kiewit Foundation William & Ruth Scott Family Foundation The Sherwood Foundation Weitz Family Foundation Women’s Fund of Omaha GUARDIANS - $10,000+ Anonymous Katie Weitz, Ph.D CHAMPIONS – $5000+ Anonymous Carol Gendler/ Marathon Realty John & Dianne Scott Annette & Paul Smith 15

BENEFACTORS – $3,000 - $4,999 Michael & Laura Alley Anonymous ADVOCATES – $1,500 - $2,999 Mary Lee Fitzsimmons Sally McGill SUPPORTERS – $500 - $1,499 Eleanor & Larry Biederman Lucia Perez Coutino Todd Margnes Doris Boruff Peterson Athena Ramos Beverly Reicks Rockbrook United Methodist Church Toni Demetria Smith Mary Umberger FRIENDS – $250 - $499 Jonathan Benjamin Alvarado Aida Alvarez & Adria Gonzalez Dawn Bashara Ellie Batt Mark J. Curley Damien Foster Emiliano & Shannon Lerda Spencer Maynes NE Victims Assistance Academy Daniel and Carolina Padilla Mindy Rush-Chipman Jose Sibrian Sisters of Mercy We appreciate our donors! Please help us correct omissions or misspellings. A complete list of donors is on our website at


“Back in 2000, Dick Carter recruited me to JFON, then a new Nebraska and Iowa United Methodist Church – sponsored effort to extend hospitality and bring immigration legal services to low-income immigrants – our neighbors. The mission of JFON met my own passionate conviction that every person living in the United States deserves justice. “Soon after, with many trained volunteers and experienced immigration law attorneys, we welcomed immigrant clients who were desperate for legal help to monthly legal clinics in Omaha Grace UM Church basement. Today’s active JFON-NE board of directors and the expanded, specialized professional staff have developed from the early local volunteers who had foresight and compassion for people who had left everything behind in the hope of finding a better life. “Today and on into the future, I am committed to support JFON-NE as my highest financial contribution priority.”

Doris Boruff Peterson


General Donors

2015 Food Truck World Tour Event Donors

WORLD TRAVELERS – $10,000+ National Justice For Our Neighbors Omaha Steaks Polina & Robert Schlott/ Warren Distribution Weitz Family Foundation MILLION MILERS – $5,000 - $9,999 Carol Gendler/ Marathon Realty Todd & Betiana Simon Annette & Paul Smith PATHFINDERS – $3,000 - $4,999 Vic Gutman & Associates Ramona & Deryl Hamann Streck, Inc.

VOYAGERS – $800 - $1,499 Acct-Style Tax Service Anonymous Anonymous Anonymous Baird Holm LLP Creighton University Hayes & Associates, LLC CQuence Health Group Tom & Darlyn Fellman Fraser Stryker Heartland Family Service Wende & John Kotouc Lund-Ross Constructors Mullhall’s Doris Boruff Peterson UNO Office of the Chancellor Veridian Credit Union Yamamoto & Kitchens PC LLO

PADDLE RAISE – $250 - $1,800 Michael & Laura Alley Sally McGill & Andrew Becerra Rita Kitchens-Bohaboj & Kurt Bohaboj Ryan Ellis Bryan & Pam Hill Gay DeWester & John Knape Susan & Mike Lebens Phil & Jane Meyer, in honor of Terrie & John Ringwalt Athena Ramos & Jose Sanchez Erin Swanson Russell & Joel Russell Anne York & Jeffrey Schrager Todd & Betiana Simon Foundation Daniel Tuzzio Rachel & Tak Yamamoto




DONATIONS – $250 – $799 Anonymous Anonymous Satchel Grande David Lanphier Senator Heath Mello Berdeen & Ronald Roemmich The Steier Group Stinson Leonard Street Law Firm Susan J. Thomas


Ryan Ellis Roberta Wilhelm & Vic Gutman Frank L. Hayes Erin Swanson Russell & Joel Russell Esther Mejia & Jeneen Sagon Athena Ramos & Jose Sanchez Todd & Betiana Simon Annette & Paul Smith

ADVENTURERS – $1,500 - $2,999 Michael & Laura Alley Mogens & Cindy Bay Dan & Esther Brabec E Creative First National Bank The Holland Foundation Matthew & Donna Johnson Kasaby & Nicholls Immigration Law Firm Kutak Rock, LLP PJ Morgan Real Estate Mary Anne & Pete Tulipana





e n V I S ION



SPECIAL THANKS Justin Blecha Jake Blecha Florian Bellanger Metropolitan Community College Iowa Western Community College


Volunteers Help Us Deliver Services Volunteers serve a critical role at JFON-NE. Without their compassionate assistance, we would not be able to serve the rapidly increasing number of immigrants who seek our help. Thank you to all the volunteers who help us welcome our newest neighbors to the communities we serve!

ADVISORY COUNCIL Bob Campos Jim Cavanaugh Roger Garcia Diane Greenfield John Knape Lowen Kruse David Lanphier Doris Boruff Peterson John Ringwalt Jenny Stilwell Jim Van Arsdall CRETE LEGAL SERVICES Grace Kraus GRAND ISLAND CLINIC Debbra Brummund, Coordinator Christy Horky, Coordinator Dr. Rev. Theresa Mason, Coordinator Connie Anderson David Clark Sherry Cook Andrew Cunningham Sandy Engel Betty Frousto Maria Gamboa Jeanne Graves Cecilia Hormachea Priscilla Hormachea John LeCompte Peter Lokodu Ann Sukraw-Lutz Raquel Maar Ann Marsh Joyce McKinny Elizabeth Troyer Miller Glen Murray


Vanessa Ocon Andrea Paret Karen Reese Carolyn Roper Del Roper Glenda Vetter Donna Winter LEXINGTON CLINIC Jose Antonio Mascareño, Coordinator Manuela Alvidrez Chawnta Durham Rosa Rodriguez de Vasquez OMAHA OFFICE Gabriela Alvarez Ben Anderson Colin Kanne Leslie A. Espino Rachel M. Lee Jenna Ripke Elisabeth Thoreson-Green Watie White, Mural Artist SOUTH SIOUX CITY LEGAL SERVICES Francys Chavez Laura Maldonado Jessica Maldonado Karina Pedroza Balbina Valadez Ismael Valadez Vanesa Valadez INTERPRETERS/TRANSLATORS Elizabeth Ajongo (Arabic) Myhanh Che (Vietnamese)

Marsha Conroy (French) Khater F. Khater (Arabic) Juana Marcos (Q’anjob’al) Luis Marcos (Q’anjob’al) PRO-BONO VOLUNTEER ATTORNEYS Jamie Arrango Joshua Barber Brian Blackford Liz Bowman Gunda Brost Julia Cryne Kristin Fearnow Jason Finch Charissa Flege George Jones Angela Loder Joseph Lopez Wilson Diana McFarland Jeff Norris Sonia Parras-Konrad Amy Peck Jennifer Piatt Laz Pittman Chris Roth Josh Sleper Jason Weiers Leanne Wells Kendall Rachel Yamamoto


2015 FINANCIALS (Unaudited) REVENUE Fundraising................................ $135,467 Grants........................................... 869,290 Individual Donations..................... 70,862 Client Donations................................. 400 Great Plains Conference of the United Methodist Church........... 106,760 National JFON............................... 50,000 TOTAL $1,232,779

DEB BRUMMUND AND CHRISTY HORKEY SUPPORT JFON-NE “As a JFON-NE volunteer, I feel honored to be a minute part of someone’s life journey. Often, the client arrives at our door with fear in their eyes and stress in their body language. They are grateful for our clinic. Little do they know that we are grateful for their courage. They visit with the attorney and it is very visible to us as they emerge that the fear and stress have begun to recede. Someone has cared enough to listen. What a joy to witness! On top of this, add the wonderful volunteers we work with monthly—busy people who readily say yes when called to help. Busy people who love to give. At the end of the clinic night I feel totally blessed to know that I have been a tiny part of God’s plan to ‘love thy neighbor as thyself.’”

– Deb Brummund

“I feel so blessed to be a volunteer for the JFON clinics and JFONNE!!! The smiles, the hugs—and yes, the tears and fears of those we serve touch my heart in a special way, knowing that our world needs each of us as God’s children to spread His Love and support for all. The folks that I have met through JFON-NE are wonderful and the work that we do brings good feelings to each of us. I feel grateful to be a part of JFON-NE and thank all of the people that have been a part of our journey thus far!!!!”

EXPENSES Management ............................. $243,999 Fundraising.................................. 108,422 Programs: Attorney of the Day..................... 60,267 Child Welfare............................. 245,726 Domestic Violence.................... 183,847 Rural Nebraska.......................... 242,269 Iowa Services............................. 145,226 TOTAL


CHANGE IN NET ASSETS ....... $2,414 NET ASSETS BEGINNING OF YEAR...........579,374 NET ASSETS END OF YEAR.......................581,788

Blessing, – Christy Horkey

Client Letter “I would like to share the experience I have with the organization Justice For Our Neighbors-Nebraska. To begin, my experience after having suffered too much domestic violence in my marriage, the group of Justice For Our Neighbors from the beginning showed interest and acted immediately. It has been a long path to be where I am today. “Today thanks to your help I have a work permit, a social security card and a driver’s license. Today I have a job, I can drive and most importantly, I have the opportunity to be someone in this country. The most important thing is: I can provide for my children.”


STAFF Giselle Arellano Paralegal

Emiliano Lerda, J.D., LL.M. Executive Director

Dawn Bashara Communications & Development Director

Virginia Maynes, Esq. Child Welfare Managing Attorney

Nancy Cardoza Esq. Domestic Violence Managing Attorney Anna Deal, Esq. Child & Family Staff Attorney

Maria Mendoza, BIA Accredited Rural Capacity Building Legal Service Provider

Charles Shane Ellison, Esq. Deputy Executive Director/Legal Director

Marcela Morales Legal Assistant

Damien Foster, CPA, CGMA Finance Manager

Mindy Rush-Chipman, Esq. Rural Capacity Building Managing Attorney

Rosangela Godinez Esq. Rural Capacity Building Attorney Yamilette Herrera Legal Assistant/Client Advocate Sanjuanita Jaimes, BIA Accredited Operations Coordinator

NEBRASKA OFFICE Justice For Our Neighbors-NE 2414 E Street Omaha, NE 68107 RURAL NEBRASKA OFFICE 200 W. 7th Street Office #221 Lexington, NE 68850 SOUTHWEST IOWA OFFICE Centro Latino of Council Bluffs

Gretchen McGill, Esq. Domestic Violence Access to Justice Attorney


Completely Kids – Omaha, NE Heartland Workers Center – Omaha, NE Latino Center of the Midlands – Omaha, NE Siena Francis House – Omaha, NE United Church of Christ/ 1st Congregational – Crete, NE Trinity United Methodist Church Grand Island, NE First United Methodist Church/ Nuevo Pacto – Lexington, NE St. Paul United Methodist Church South Sioux City Centro Latino – Council Bluffs, IA Heartland Family Service – Council Bluffs, IA

Gary Walters, Esq. Iowa Managing Attorney Lisl Zamora Esq. Child & Family Staff Attorney


Trinity United Methodist Church Grand Island, NE First United Methodist Church/ Nuevo Pacto, Lexington, NE Grace United Methodist Church Omaha, NE

Information: 402-898-1349 Appointments: 855-307-6730

604 Main Street Council Bluffs, Iowa 51103

JUSTICE FOR OUR NEIGHBORS–NEBRASKA • 2414 E Street • Omaha, NE 68107 Phone: 402-898-1349 • Fax: (402) 502-4604

2015 Justice For Our Neighbors Annual Report  
2015 Justice For Our Neighbors Annual Report