Family Immigration Services


ESL Class of 2012

ESL Class of 2012

Family Immigration Services

Family Immigration Services provides services that help immigrants and refugees find a place in a welcoming community in two important areas:  English as a Second Language Classes and Legal Immigration Services.

 

Family Immigration Services are located at:

The Catholic Pastoral Center:
288 North Cascade Ave.
Colorado Springs, CO 80903
English as a Second Language: 719.866-6510

English as a Second Language: 719.866-6510
Immigration Legal Services: 719.866.6515

Immigration Legal Services: 719.866.6515

 

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English as a Second Language/Educational Services

Family Immigration Services provides English as a Second Language services to adults. By not only acquiring English language skills, but also learning about customs, laws and individual rights and responsibilities of the United States, our participants can better engage in community life, support their families and improve their lives.

Our staff of volunteer teachers works in partnership with the students to improve their skills and build the confidence to perform daily tasks such as shopping, going to the doctor, talking with their children’s teachers, and communicating on the job.

We help immigrants feel part of the community through their friendships with our staff of volunteer teachers; providing information about community resources; offering workshops that explain laws, rights, school systems, and other topics of importance; and sharing customs.

Classes are offered September to May, twice a week in evening and daytime programs at multiple sites.

Low-cost childcare is available.

 

 

Immigration Legal Services

Starting on the path to U.S. citizenship can be confusing and difficult for those who are eligible but still have limited language skills or understanding of our systems. Immigration is a complicated code and individuals may be taken advantage of by being given the wrong advice or charged fees that are not appropriate to their situation. Others may not fully understand the steps they need to take and, as strangers in a strange land, need help navigating the rules and regulations.

Family Immigration Services helps Lawful Permanent Residents, immigrants, and refugees understand eligibility and requirements, and get help filling out certain forms, with accurate advice and low-cost fees.

Family Immigration Services is officially recognized by the Department of Justice, Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) pursuant to 8 Code of Federal Regulations Part 292.2. These services are intended for low-income individuals who need specific assistance within our scope of services. Consultations are by appointment only. Consultations will include an evaluation of the case to determine if it is within our scope of service; and referrals as needed.

Office hours are Monday – Thursday.  Call 719-866-6515  for an appointment. Bilingual Spanish/English staff.

 

Family Immigration Services Expands Services

In Fall of 2015, Eric Pavri, Immigration Attorney, became the Director of Family Immigration Services (FIS). With an Immigration Attorney on staff and two staff members with Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) Accreditation, FIS is now able to take on legal residency cases that previously had to be referred to other agencies. For example, FIS can now assist immigrant crime victims who have provided significant assistance to local law enforcement agencies in investigating violent crimes, help abandoned immigrant children in Colorado state court to obtain orders needed to apply to the federal government for Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, and represent immigrants facing deportation in Immigration Court.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In 2015 and 2016, Eric and the of the BIA Accredited Immigration Counselors took two trips to Dilley, Texas to provide pro-bono services to jailed immigrant families – mostly single mothers with children.   The picture (above) includes the Catholic Charities staff along with many volunteers and attorneys who all worked to help the families in the center.

This effort was a part of CARA Pro Bono Project, a collaboration between multiple groups across the nation to respond to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s expansion of family detention in Dilley. They helped prepare women for Credible Fear Interviews in which the women have the opportunity to provide a basis for an asylum case. If they pass the interview, the women are released and will later appear before an immigration judge to argue for asylum. “It’s like a battleground triage where you just try and do the best you can,” said Eric as he described their short week working long hours in Dilley.

“When you mention ‘detention center,’ people assume they are criminals” Ivonne said as she described the work with immigrants in Dilley.  “These are women who are fleeing their countries because of violence.”  The majority of families are from Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador with few from other Central and South American Countries.
Following their week in Dilley, the FIS team continues to be involved with the CARA project by taking cases of women who have been released from the detention center and are preparing for their asylum hearing in Colorado.

For more information about CARA, please visit caraprobono.org.




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