Kids in Need of Defense [KIND]

KIND is a nonprofit organization that was started in 2008 by Microsoft and Angelina Jolie to recruit pro bono attorneys to represent unaccompanied immigrant children in US immigration courts. So far, the organization has recruited more than 11,000 lawyers nationwide willing to take a child’s case for free. Despite this, more than half of these children are going to immigration court with no legal advocate by their side. They are being asked to argue complex asylum cases with no help. Among children who have legal representation, 7 in 10 win their cases [and 9 in 10 with KIND lawyers]. Among children with no legal representation, 9 in 10 lose their cases.

Many of these children are fleeing persecution from gangs, abuse or violence. Some are left abandoned by parents and are forced to fend for themselves. Children who are apprehended by US Border Patrol are not entitled to a public defender or advocate to help them make their case to an immigration judge before being deported–sometimes to harm or death in their home countries. KIND is working to ensure that no child faces going to court alone. Sonia Nazario is on the board of KIND.

Read about KIND:

To support KIND:

Fusion TV segment on KIND

Migrant Children Deserve a Voice in Court NYT article

Groups like @supportKIND, of which I am proudly a board member, have recruited more than 11,000 pro bono attorneys since 2008 to represent immigrant children in court, but it’s not enough given the number of children in need. If a child cannot afford a lawyer and is facing arguing their complex asylum claim alone in court [as more than half do, and I’ve personally seen children as young as 7 doing this] our government should step in and help.

Help Children Return Safely to Gautemala

KIND has partnered with the Global Fund for Children (GFC) to help unaccompanied children who are deported to their home countries. Nearly 14,000 unaccompanied children came to the United States in fiscal 2012 and were placed in federal custody. About 20% of these children were from Guatemala. When these children are deported, the Guatemalan Child Return and Reintegration Project (GCRRP) provides safe passage and support upon arrival to Guatemala — helping children continue their education, get a job, or providing other assitance — so they don’t turn around and make this horrific journey again.

To donate to help this project:


small OPED Photo_Page_1 Sonia Nazario’s latest opinion piece was featured on the cover of the New York Times Sunday Review 8/14/16. It’s good news! The piece shows how US violence prevention and intervention programs are helping Honduras, the country Enrique came from, reduce homicides. These programs have helped Honduras but also the U.S. by reducing the number of children fleeing these neighborhoods to migrate north.
Instead of the usual programs the U.S. funds, which focus on suppression, we should replicate these programs elsewhere in central america. If you are moved by the story of Pastor Daniel Pacheco, who puts himself in the line of fire to bring peace to the neighborhood I write about, please donate whatever you can HERE :

Book Sonia To Speak

Sonia Nazario speaks at universities, conferences, high schools, and other events. Email her at:

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