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Every day, organizations worldwide are engaged in a collective two steps forward, one step back march toward improved immigration services and policies. What hard-earned lessons are these nonprofits, and the foundations that support them, learning from their persistent efforts? This collection of evaluations, case studies, and lessons learned exposes and explores the nuances of effective collaboration, the value of coordinated messaging, the bedrock of ongoing advocacy efforts, and the vital importance of long-term and flexible funding.

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"Immigration"" by Paul_the_Seeker is licensed under CC 2.0

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Ready to Learn, Eager to Earn: A youth-led market and wellbeing assessment in Rohingya camps

July 28, 2023

Without access to quality, relevant education, or dignified work, Rohingya refugee youth face bleak and limited futures. Within the camp setting, they are unable to meet their immediate basic needs and are at high risk of violations of their rights, wellbeing, and security.The Rohingya community is about to mark six years since its exodus from Myanmar. The state of Rohingya youth remains a blur: what are the barriers related to livelihood opportunities and social engagement? What are the skill-development needs for Rohingya youth residing in the refugee camps of Cox's Bazar?

Refugees & Asylum Seekers

ICE’s New Young Adult Case Management Program: Why It Falls Short of Case Management Best Practices and Puts Youth at Risk

June 26, 2023

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) launched the Young Adult Case Management Program (YACMP) in January 2023 to target and monitor 18- and19-year-old youth who the agency deems "low flight risk" and "non-dangerous." ICE characterizes this program as an "Alternative to Detention," but the program's design makes clear that it will not decrease reliance on detention and instead increase the number of young people under government monitoring. Rather than work collaboratively with youth to match them with support services based on their individual needs, ICE unilaterally and arbitrarily enrolls youth in YACMP if they are facing immigration court proceedings and are not detained, irrespective of their specific needs.This policy brief examines: 1) who are the youth impacted by this new ICE program; 2) what this program entails and how it compares with traditional case management programs; and 3) what we know about the corporation ICE has contracted to run this program. It has recommendations for effective case management for impacted youth.

Strengthening Border Families: Data Highlights from Interviews & Focus Groups With Immigrant Caregivers

June 20, 2023

This report details key findings of the third phase of a multiphase mixed-methods study that aims to: 1) understand the accessibility and quality of services for immigrant families with young children in Doña Ana County both before and during the COVID-19 pandemic; 2) identify barriers and facilitators to service access for these families; and 3) uplift community-informed practice and policy solutions to improve equity in access to key supportive services for immigrant families with young children in southern New Mexico and across the state.

Recommendations for Serving Unaccompanied and Separated Children at Regional Processing Centers

June 16, 2023

As the United States' leading organization protecting the rights of unaccompanied immigrant and refugee children, Kids in Need of Defense (KIND) has advocated for expanded access to lawful migration pathways for children and families so that fewer children face a dangerous journey seeking safety or needlessly become separated from their family along the way. The U.S. government's announcement that new Regional Processing Centers (RPCs) will be created to serve migrants seeking protection is a welcome step forward. Informed by our on-the-ground experience, KIND recommends the following to ensure that Regional Processing Centers, also known as Oficinas de Movilidad Segura, best address the needs of children on the move.


Building Social Cohesion Among Diverse Youth During COVID-19: Insights from the Pilot Phase of the Youth Unity Project

June 8, 2023

The United States has a long, complex history of immigration that has shaped how we view the country—its strengths, its shortcomings, as well as its promise to be a sum greater than its parts. For us to reach our fullest potential as individuals and as a nation, it is incumbent on us to understand and explore our many immigration journeys. However, public debate around immigration is more divisive now than it has been in generations. Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, this widening divide has quickly created an environment in which youth, both new immigrants and those within the receiving community, feel less connected, engaged, and empowered to create their own, bold vision for a cohesive nation.The Youth Unity Project, a joint effort created by Y-USA and the Council, connects young, new immigrants with young people in their respective receiving communities and teaches them about immigration in the United States. Throughout the process, the young people engage on issues related to social justice, belonging, and social cohesion.

Children; Community-Based Outreach & Activity

Hope and uncertainty: A needs assessment of Ukrainian youth refugees in Romania and Moldova

May 4, 2023

Youth are a significant proportion of refugees fleeing from Ukraine, particularly female youth. In Romania and Moldova, more than half of the refugees there are between the ages of 18 and 59.The findings we discovered together show great needs amid strong hope for a secure future. Language was found to be an overarching need that affects every aspect of youth's lives. Economic support, through secure jobs and stable integration, are the most cited need. Ukrainian youth appreciated the safety of their host communities but still live with anxiety over their futures. Feelings of isolation and distance from family and friends displaced by the conflict contribute to the mental strain youth feel. Youth also have practical suggestions for how to serve their needs, calling for language support and community centers where they can connect meaningfully with their peers and communities.

Children; Refugees & Asylum Seekers

Unlocking Opportunities: Supporting English Learners’ Equitable Access to Career and Technical Education

April 19, 2023

Once considered a less-rigorous high school pathway, career and technical education (CTE) has experienced a renaissance since the 1990s, as more high-skilled and white-collar professions have been included in these elective course options. Research indicates that participation in CTE—especially taking more than one course in a single occupational area—is correlated with benefits in graduation rates and earnings as an adult.As CTE's scope and audience have grown, educators and advocates have brought attention to the need to ensure equitable access for historically marginalized student groups. For high school English Learners (ELs), who often face challenges to college and career readiness, CTE can play an important role in helping them stay engaged in school, graduate, and get on a path to a career providing a family-sustaining wage.

Ensuring Humane and Orderly Processing of Unaccompanied Children at the U.S.-Mexico Border

January 6, 2023

As the Biden Administration prepares to end the use of Title 42 expulsions, it must refrain from any actions that restrict access to humanitarian protection in the United States. In preparation for the end of the policy, the Administration can and should adopt the below recommendations on an immediate and long-term basis to ensure operational efficiency, due process, and individual safety in the reception of unaccompanied children and other migrants at the border.


Return and Reintegration of Unaccompanied Migrant Children

August 10, 2022

KIND created the Child Migrant Return and Reintegration Program to ensure that returning children have the support and resources they need for safe return and successful reintegration back into their communities. This infographic explains the existing return process and describes how KIND's program interventions can support children at each step.


A Time of Transformation: 2021 Annual Report

August 4, 2022

Kids in Need of Defense (KIND) is the preeminent U.S.-based nongovernmental organization devoted to the protection of unaccompanied and separated children. KIND envisions a world in which every unaccompanied child on the move has access to legal counsel and has their rights and well-being protected as they migrate alone in search of safety.


Learning from Youth: Envisioning Freedom for Unaccompanied Children

June 30, 2022

Hundreds of thousands of unaccompanied children and youth from around the world have arrived in the United States over the past decade seeking protection from violence, persecution, war, and insecurity. Yet, their reception into the country has often led them into an immigration system characterized by systematic criminalization, a lack of transparency, and separation from their families. The reception system for children arriving to the United States needs to be reformed to demonstrate respect for their basic human dignity. In interviews and group discussions, Vera engaged with 32 young adults who were detained as unaccompanied minors by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR). They shared their stories about navigating the complex U.S. immigration system. Drawing from their lived experience and expertise, they developed 10 proposals to reform the reception system for unaccompanied children and youth in a way that centers their freedom, safety, and family unity.


Affective Cartographies: Migrant, Displaced, And Refugee Girls And Adolescent Girls In Latin America And The Caribbean

June 20, 2022

Being a girl or an adolescent girl is no simple task in a time of multiple socialization demands to access the adult world. But being a migrant, displaced, or refugee girl or adolescent girl is even more complex, not only due to the difficulties stemming from sociocultural and economic standards, but also due to the uprooting that girls and adolescent girls are subjected to when they are forced to leave their country of origin. This report produced jointly by HIAS and UNICEF highlights the main needs and challenges for girls and adolescent girls, including forms of violence they experience during their processes of migration and forced displacement.

Children; Refugees & Asylum Seekers