Published on December 13, 2023

Meet the Latest Legal Accelerator Grantees Furthering Justice in their Communities

FurtherJustice is pleased to announce its 2024-2025 cohort of Legal Accelerator Grantees – four exceptional organizations committed to providing holistic legal services that increase access to justice, power and equity for their communities in Long Island, NY and New Haven, CT.

They collectively will receive $900,000 in grants in 2024-2025 and programmatic assistance from FurtherJustice to help launch or expand civil legal service programs within their organizations. Each project will also be eligible for an additional $75,000 in matching funds in 2026.

Learn more about our grantees below:

CARECEN-NY & Terra Firma National

$300,000 to holistically support unaccompanied immigrant minors on Long Island by integrating legal, medical, mental health and social services at Harmony Healthcare Long Island — a federally qualified healthcare center on Long Island that provides quality health services to all community members, regardless of insurance status or ability to pay.

CARECEN-NY serves Long Island’s immigrant communities by providing legal services, community education, and advocacy to more than 5,000 immigrants each year.

TERRA FIRMA NATIONAL is building a national network of holistic legal services programs that pairs immigration legal services with trauma-informed medical and mental healthcare and social programming.

“We are proud to be teaming up in the creation of the country’s first national network of co-located healthcare and legal programs for migrant youth. The Terra Firma model of integrating immigration legal services into primary medical and mental healthcare secures legal protections, improves healthy equity, and facilitates integration. At the Terra Firma Flagship program in the Bronx, we’ve seen firsthand how addressing immigration status as a social determinant of health improves health and legal outcomes. Long Island has among the greatest number of newly-arriving unaccompanied children in the United States; the ratio of need to services is an equation for injustice that must be re-balanced.”

– Elise de Castillo, Executive Director, CARECEN-NY

– Alan Shapiro, Executive Director, Terra Firma National

– Brett Stark, National Network Director, Terra Firma National

Law & Racial Justice Center at Yale Law School

$300,000 to create a community law library that operates as a hub for civil legal assistance, community legal education and physical space for organizing and base-building.

The LAW & RACIAL JUSTICE CENTER brings together New Haveners, Yale students, staff, and faculty, local government officials, and local and national experts to imagine and implement projects, including a law school pipeline program, that advance racial justice in New Haven and build a more just community.

“Many of our existing community partners are people who are self-taught in the law and who became effective legal advocates on their own, often while in prison. As people directly impacted by the outcomes of their self-advocacy, they are uniquely positioned to help run the community law library and advance our efforts to shift power within New Haven. Like many working class communities of color, New Haveners create opportunities to survive and thrive through mutual aid networks, union organizing, youth development organizations, networks of food justice activism, local business incubation, and a vibrant arts and culture scene. With this grant and the community law library, we hope to contribute to this long tradition of solidarity and mutual support in New Haven.”

– Kayla Vinson, Executive Director, Law & Racial Justice Center

New Hour for Women & Children Long Island

$300,000 to launch an in-house civil legal services program to comprehensively assist New Hour members – justice-impacted women and mothers – with family law matters.

 NEW HOUR empowers justice-impacted women, mothers and gender expansive people through jail programming, reentry support, and advocacy/movement building.

“Justice-impacted women and mothers often face severe disadvantages as a result of incarceration. This often means other systems of court-involvement, including family and civil court create insurmountable hurdles for women and mothers returning home from prison and jail. We are grateful to be recipients of FurtherJustice’s Legal Accelerator Grant, which will allow us to provide legal counsel to formerly and currently incarcerated women and mothers across Long Island. This means they are one step closer to successful reentry, reuniting with their children and achieving stability in their reentry journey,”

– Serena Martin-Liguori, Executive Director, New Hour for Women & Children, LI

Stay Informed