Daniela Donoso

  • Hosted by Legal Services of North Florida, Inc.
  • Sponsored by Greenberg Traurig, LLP, The Florida Bar Foundation
  • Service location Tallahassee, Florida
  • Law school Florida State University College of Law
  • Issue area Immigrant Populations
  • Fellowship class year 2020
  • Program Design Your Own Fellowship

The Project

Daniela is creating a comprehensive immigration advocacy program in North Florida to serve immigrants who are low-income and/or crime victims and is establishing immigration protocols, procedures, and resources for Legal Services of North Florida staff and community partners.

North Florida lacks the institutional memory of a central advocacy organization doing the hard work of outreach to both immigrant communities and service agencies. The Florida panhandle has a huge agricultural and tourism presence, two industries that draw immigrants in vast numbers. There is a great need for both free legal help for low-income immigrants and trainings for agencies serving this population, especially in today’s environment of rapidly changing immigration policies.

Daniela, a current DACA recipient, knows what it is like to have your life shifted by fear and uncertainty because of the broken immigration system. Her personal and professional experience working with marginalized communities has instilled an altruistic spirit that makes her uniquely suited for this Fellowship.

Fellowship Highlights to Date

In the past year, Daniela has:

  • Provided full representation to over 20 immigrant clients and brief services, advice, and/or referrals to an additional 45 individuals
  • Secured the deferred action waitlist for three U-visa clients after supplementing their pending petitions
  • Conducted Legal Services of North Florida’s first-ever immigration legal clinic in Tallahassee
  • Provided eight community education and outreach presentations, reaching over 900 community members
  • Delivered 19 presentations to other service providers, allies, and LSNF attorneys in all five offices
  • Collaborated with over 45 groups and attended over 130 coalition-building meetings to expand the reach and impact of the project
  • Collaborated with local advocacy organizations to increase access to the COVID-19 vaccine for the immigrant community in Tallahassee

Next Steps

In the next year, Daniela plans to:

  • Collaborate with the Gender and Family Justice Clinic to facilitate a Guardianship clinic for immigrant victims of crime to learn about the Power of Attorney and what to do if they get picked up by ICE
  • Conduct trainings with guidance counselors and social workers in high schools in the second judicial circuit to provide assistance and information for their non-citizen students regarding higher education
  • Co-present two CLE trainings on immigration and human trafficking for local attorneys

Media

‘America is a land of dreams’: Local dreamers optimistic following Biden executive orders

FSU Law School grad earns coveted two-year fellowship to work on immigration advocacy

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