On October 12, 1999, Fr. Brian J. Jordan, O.F.M. founded the St. Francis Immigration Center as a resource and referral center for newly-arrived immigrants/migrants. Its primary goal was to fulfill the mission statement of Holy Name Province by reaching out to the “poor, the immigrant and the alienated.”
Offereing free and confidential legal services, the St. Francis Immigration Center helped more than seven hundred individuals and families during its first 14 years. However, the needs of these newly arrived immigrants/migrants are not solely limited to regularizing their status. There is also a need to respect, promote and protect their rights and welfare. Therefore, we are widening the scope of our ministry. Our change of name from St. Francis Immigration Center to The Migrant Center at the Church of St. Francis of Assisi (MC-CSFA) reflects this expansion of services.
Inspired by the Franciscan tradition of ministering to people who are alienated, displaced, or persecuted, the “pilgrims and strangers” in our midst, The Migrant Center at the Church of St. Francis of Assisi welcomes immigrants/migrants of various ethnic backgrounds regardless of political or religious affiliation.
• Immigration Information Service – assisting immigrants/migrants with their legal needs• Social Services Assistance –assisting immigrants/migrants to navigate the social service system through referral and on-site services such as ESL Classes, free health screenings, etc.
• Solidarity, Advocacy and Network Building – aimed at protecting and promoting the rights and welfare of immigrants (e.g., campaign against wage theft and other oppressive employment issues, visits to the Immigration Detention Center) in collaboration with other immigrant/migrant organizations and institutions
• Education and Formation – aimed at raising public awareness and providing opportunities for involvement in initiatives that promote and protect the rights of immigrants/migrants in collaboration with other organizations and institutions.
How Can You Help?
• If you are an immigration lawyer or a lawyer of any field of practice or paralegal or legal representative, you can provide pro-bono legal services, especially for difficult cases or you can provide free legal consultation on site.• Volunteer on a weekly basis as an intake coordinator.
• Be a translator from your native tongue to English or be a sign language translator.
• Be a social services assistant or a resource person to help immigrants/migrants access the social service system.
• Participate in advocacy campaigns, volunteer to visit detainees.
• Promote awareness of the center by mentioning it to your friends and/or inviting your friends to participate/volunteer at the center.
• Make a tax-deductible financial contribution that will enable the Migrant Center to serve our less fortunate brothers and sisters.
For more information or for immigration assistance or to volunteer, please contact Fr. Julian Jagudilla, O.F.M. at 212-736-8500 ext. 377 or at email@example.com