Javiera L. Wood

  • Hosted by Kids in Need of Defense (KIND)
  • Sponsored by Microsoft Corporation, The Sidley Austin Foundation
  • Service location Seattle, Washington
  • Law school Seattle University School of Law
  • Issue area Immigrant Populations
  • Fellowship class year 2020
  • Program Design Your Own Fellowship

The Project

Javiera is building a network of service providers to address the legal needs of unaccompanied immigrant and refugee children in Eastern Washington.

No child should face Immigration Court alone. Children and families who come to KIND are among the most vulnerable in our society. Many have fled life-threatening violence, struggle with varying forms of trauma, and come to the United States in hopes of finding safety. Unaccompanied immigrant children are not provided with an attorney in their removal (deportation) proceedings; without counsel, it is nearly impossible for them to navigate the U.S. immigration system.

Javiera immigrated to the United States when she was sixteen years old. Throughout her journey, she was treated with empathy. Today, she hopes to be an advocate and support other children in their journeys.

Fellowship Highlights to Date

During the first year of the Fellowship, Javiera has:

  • Provided full legal representation to 15 unaccompanied immigrant children in SIJS applications, applying for work permits, biometric appointments, ICE check-ins, representing clients in Immigration Court, and connecting clients with social services
  • Launched active outreach program in Eastern Washington that includes contacting local service providers and community groups, preparing virtual presentations and webinars for pro bono attorneys, identifying, and pursuing partnership opportunities, and initiating recruitment of pro bono attorneys
  • Conducted three presentations for students, parents of unaccompanied children, and foster parents of unaccompanied refugee minors
  • Established a collaborative relationship with the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project and Lutheran Community Services Northwest, enlisting allies to help expand project reach and exposure
  • Recruited five pro bono volunteers to support KIND’s work.

Next Steps

In the next six months, Javiera plans to:

  • Expand outreach program by connecting with stakeholders, recruiting volunteers, and engaging in education at selected community sites
  • Continue placement of individual clients with pro bono attorneys to expand project capacity to serve unaccompanied immigrant children in Eastern Washington
  • Train, mentor, and provide other resources to pro bono attorneys and the judicial bench
  • Expand caseload to provide full direct legal representation to 22 unaccompanied immigrant children


Two 2020 grads receive Equal Justice Works Fellowships

KIND was founded based on the conviction that no child should face immigration court alone. The same conviction has inspired me to direct my efforts to immigration law actively.

Javiera L. Wood /
2020 Equal Justice Works Fellow

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