/ Blog Post
My Impact is a conversation series from Equal Justice Works, using interviews with alumni to shine a light on what’s possible with an Equal Justice Works Fellowship. In the latest installment of My Impact, we spoke with Lauren Blodgett, a 2016 Fellow and current staff attorney at the Safe Passage Project. Lauren is also founder and executive director at The Brave House, and a Forbes 30 Under 30 – Law & Policy recipient in 2019.
In response to an unprecedented surge of unaccompanied minors from Central America into the United States in 2016, Lauren Blodgett used her Equal Justice Works Fellowship at the Safe Passage Project to deliver specialized legal assistance—and a safe space to heal—to her young clients. Lauren stayed on with the Safe Passage Project following her Fellowship, where she remains committed to representing unaccompanied minors in immigration court. Lauren is also the founder of The Brave House, a nonprofit organization that holistically supports young immigrant women ages 16–24 in New York City with free legal services, peer mentorship, and events aimed at promoting wellness, life skills, and fun.
Lauren spoke with Equal Justice Works Marketing Manager Shani DeWindt about resiliency, honing your public service passion, finding the perfect host organization, making the most of the Fellow-sponsor relationship, and much more.
For those looking to enter public service, Lauren emphasized the importance of following your passions and thinking hard about the difference you want to make. The ultimate question to ask when designing your Fellowship, she notes, is, “What impact do you want to have on the world?”
“For me, it was about giving back and serving in a way that I felt connected to. Everything that I’m doing, I feel like it’s helping to strengthen my own community, my own roots, and the things I stand for and value and cherish,” she said.
Acknowledging the precariousness of the situation for those entering the field amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Lauren remains hopeful for Equal Justice Works Fellows to come:
“You’re at a juncture where there’s a lot of unknown, but also there’s a lot of opportunity,” said Lauren. “There’s a lot of people who need help! And there’s a lot of ways that you can help them. You have these rare skills—don’t forget that.”
To learn more about kickstarting your public interest law career as a 2021 Equal Justice Works Fellow, visit here.