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CALIFORNIA
 

ALLIANCE FOR CHILDREN’S RIGHTS
3333 Wilshire Blvd., Ste. 550
Los Angeles, CA 90010
Telephone:       (213) 368-6010
Fax:                 (213) 368-6016
E-mail:          info@kids-alliance.org
Website:          www.kids-alliance.org

 

100% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

Established in 1992, the Alliance for Children’s Rights provides representation for children in a wide range of legal areas by recruiting and training volunteer lawyers. A staff of five lawyers, assisted by one social worker, and a bilingual teacher, coordinate cases with over 350 volunteer attorneys. Clients are referred through the Juvenile Court, schools, social service agencies, health care professionals and other attorneys. Volunteers are recruited through local bar associations, law firms, law schools and seminars. Social workers, child development specialists, paralegals and health care professionals also volunteer and are available to assist the pro bono attorneys in handling their cases. This project has been especially successful at recruiting professionals from a wide range of disciplines. In addition to staff attorneys and paralegals, a number of pro bono attorneys work a regular schedule in the office. Volunteers may be personally responsible for cases, team with the staff or work on non-litigation projects such as researching and writing reference and “How To” manuals. The Alliance handles impact litigation when appropriate.

 

 

CENTER FOR CHILDREN’S RIGHTS
WHITTIER LAW SCHOOL
3333 Harbor Blvd.
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
Telephone:       (714) 444-4141 ext. 304
                        (800) 888-8108
Fax:                 (714) 444-3230
Website:          http://www.law.whittier.edu/index/centers-programs/ccr/

 

100% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

The Center for Children’s Rights has two broad missions: (1) to train students to represent the rights and interests of children, and (2) to serve as a resource for the community. The Center runs a Fellowship Program that each year offers 20 entering law students the opportunity to participate in a three year curriculum focused on children’s law. The Center also runs a monthly colloquia on children’s issues for students, the practicing bar, legal scholars and policy makers.

 

The Children’s Rights Clinic began in the summer of 2000 as part of the Center for Children’s Rights. 25 to 30 students participate in the clinic every year and work with four staff attorneys to handle at least 150 cases a year. Cases are referred from juvenile court, social service agencies, the Legal Aid Society and pro bono programs. The Clinic uses three to four volunteer attorneys a year as mentors and for research guidance; training is provided for volunteers, and interested attorneys should call the clinic. The Clinic accepts calls from children and the public seeking legal information. Although the Clinic is not offered through a class, the law school offers many juvenile law courses, including Family Law, Juvenile Trial Advocacy, Adoption Law, Juvenile Law and Special Education Law.

 

In addition, the Center runs a Street Law Program, a community outreach program through which advanced law students teach various legal subjects to middle and high school students in the Orange and Los Angeles County school districts.

 

 

CENTER FOR JUVENILE LAW AND POLICY
LOYOLA LAW SCHOOL
919 Albany St.
Los Angeles, CA 90015
Telephone:       (213) 736-8339
Fax:                 (213) 387-6006
Website:          http://www.lls.edu/academics/centersprograms/centerforjuvenilelawpolicy/

 

100% Children’s Law

 

The Loyola Law School Center for Juvenile Law and Policy was created in the fall of 2005 to foster systemic reform of the Los Angeles juvenile justice system by participating in and encouraging research, discussion and advocacy. Part of this project is a Juvenile Justice Clinic. Two attorneys and one social worker supervise 12 law students who represent children in approximately 40 cases a year. Social work students also participate in this Clinic. The law school offers several juvenile law courses, including Juvenile Delinquency Law & Procedure, Advanced Criminal Litigation Skills and Children and the Law. The Clinic does not currently utilize volunteer lawyers but would do so if a lawyer was interested. This Clinic does handle impact litigation. Cases are referred from juvenile court, public defenders and the public. Calls are accepted from the public and from children seeking legal information.

 

 

CHILD CARE LAW CENTER
445 Church Street
San Francisco, California 94114
Telephone:       (415) 558-8005
Email:              info@childcarelaw.org
Website:          www.childcarelaw.org

 

100% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

Founded in 1978, the Child Care Law Center specializes in the area of insuring access to child care for low income children. Working primarily with child care providers, the Center serves as a counseling, resource and training center to help providers serving low income families understand and utilize the government benefits available in the child care area. Clients are referred from a local child care resource agency. Volunteer lawyers are recruited through the local bar, law firms, law schools seminars and a training program that is offered annually. CLE credit is available. Pro bono attorneys may team with a staff member, or handle cases independently. Cases are monitored by self-reporting from volunteers, or if the client agrees, attorneys are asked to send a copy of all case related documents to the Center. The five staff attorneys are assisted by one paralegal. The Center obtained injunctive relief in Miller v. Anderson, which challenged a California regulation that denied child care entitlements to families in which the parents were participating in self-initiated job training or an education program. The Center has also brought other impact litigation cases concerning access to child care entitlements and child care licensing.

 

The Center produces and has available a comprehensive list of publications available to child care providers on a wide range of legal issues, including: Caring for the Future: Meeting California’s Child Care Challenges; Child Care Contracts: Information for Providers; Liability Insurance; Family Day Care Zoning Advocacy Guide; Legal Guide for Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies; Caring for Children with Special Needs: the ADA and Child Care. CCLC also produces a quarterly newsletter, the Legal Update, which publicizes the latest legal developments affecting the child care field. The Center also maintains a Law and Policy Resources Bank which acts as a clearing house for legislation, cases, briefs, and legal memoranda on critical legal issues in child care. A manual on the reporting responsibilities of child care providers who observe signs of abuse and neglect is published by the Center.

 

 

CHILDREN AND FAMILY ADVOCACY PROGRAM
DISABILITY RIGHTS EDUCATION AND DEFENSE FUND, INC.
3075 Adeline Street, Suite 210
Berkeley, CA 94703
 Telephone:      510.644.2555
Fax:                 510-841-8645
Email:              info@dredf.org
Website:          www.dredf.org

 

Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

The Children and Family Advocacy Program of the Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund, Inc. (DREDF) began in 1979 to help disabled children and their families. Two of DREDF’s projects provide training, information, and assistance to parents of children with disabilities and the professionals who work with them. Services offered through our Parent Training and Information Center, Foster Youth Resources for Education, and Clearinghouse on Foster Youth and Transition enable parents and professionals to become more knowledgeable about educational services available for children with disabilities and their rights and protections under the IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and other relevant laws.

 

DREDF is staffed by six attorneys. Clients of the program are referred by parents and disability groups, legal services projects and Protection & Advocacy, Inc., as well as other attorneys in the community. Volunteers are recruited through local law firms and law schools. Training for law students is provided through a law school clinical program and volunteer lawyers are trained on an as-needed basis. CLE credit is offered for some training programs. Cases are monitored by staff telephone calls or by teaming volunteers with a staff member. The program also receives assistance from various technical specialists and parent advocates. Expert witnesses are sometimes employed in education litigation cases. Impact litigation is accepted. A recent case involved education integration or “inclusion” of children with disabilities into general education classrooms under IDEA.

 

 

CHILDREN’S ADVOCACY INSTITUTE
UNIVERSITY OF SAN DIEGO SCHOOL OF LAW
5998 Alcalá Park
San Diego, CA 92110
Telephone:       (619) 260-4806
Fax:                 (619) 260-4753
Email:              info@caichildlaw.org
Website:          www.caichildlaw.org

 

100% Children’s Law

 

The Children’s Advocacy Institute (CAI) was founded in 1989 with a grant from the Weingart Foundation and has offices in San Diego, Los Angeles and Sacramento. CAI is an institute within the University of San Diego School of Law. The staff of CAI consists of an interdisciplinary team of legal, social science, and health professionals. Within the Institute, CAI operates a law school clinic that teams staff attorneys with volunteer law students to assist clients in abuse and neglect, dependency, and guardianship cases. Clients are referred from the Juvenile Court, social service agencies, schools, health care professionals and other attorneys in the community. The law school clinic program of CAI also focuses on impact litigation, and the staff and students have assisted in impact cases brought by CAI. Two recent cases involved funding for child abuse protection in California and playground safety rules.

 

As an Institute, CAI focuses on child abuse and neglect, child care and development, child health and safety issues, and on efforts to improve the government’s delivery of children’s services in California. During the 1991-97 sessions of the California State Legislature, for example, CAI sponsored 22 bills that were enacted, and successfully litigated impact cases securing rights for children and children’s service providers. The Institute has taken an active stance in a wide number of areas. Child Abuse Projects: Improvement of Child Abuse Investigations: Child Abuse Victim-Witness Pilot Projects; Representing Children More Effectively: The SCA Pilot Project; Extending the SCA Model through the Nathan Cummings Foundation Project; Improving Attorney Representation of Children in Juvenile Court; Improving Judicial Performance in Juvenile Court; Legislation to Refine State Law to Protect Children Threatened by Severe Neglect; Detection of Legislation Harmful to Abused Children; Child Abuse Litigation. Child Care Projects: Licensing Improvements; Child Care Regulations and Health and Safety Funding: The “Kids’ Plates” Program; Training of Child Care Providers; Litigation to Protect Child Care and Development Program Funding. Child Health and Safety Projects: Maternal and Child Health Advocacy Project; Childhood Lead Poisoning; Pesticides; Access to Health Care; Managed Care; Immunization; Nutrition; Child Labor. Government Organization Reform: California Children’s Budget; Child Support Collection; Parenting Education. Leadership and Collaboration: Advocacy Training; Collaborative Roundtables; Child Advocate News; National Organizations/Conferences.

 

 

CHILDREN’S LAW CENTER OF CALIFORNIA
Los Angeles Office:
201 Centre Plaza Drive, Ste. 10
Monterey Park, CA 91754
Telephone:       323.980.1700
Fax:                 323.980.1708
Website:          www.clcla.org

 

Sacramento Office:
8950 Cal Center Drive, Suite 301
Sacramento, CA 95826
Phone 916.520.2000
Fax 916.520.7650

 

100% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

Formerly the Children’s Law Center of Los Angeles, the Children’s Law Center of represents children who are at risk of abuse or neglect in juvenile dependency proceedings and seeks to advocate for critical services and support that these children so desperately need. Practicing in dependency court requires the development of expertise in a variety of areas -- negotiation and mediation skills, legal research and writing, and trial skills - along with an array of non-legal areas related to child and family well-being including, child development, health and mental health, substance abuse, domestic violence and special education. CLC attorneys and staff are committed and passionate in their representation of our County’s foster youth in day to day dependency hearings, as well as a host of other related hearings and proceedings that seek to ensure the child’s well-being and future success.


On a broader organizational level, CLC strives to identify areas where systemic reforms are needed and to work with other advocacy groups and stakeholders to bring about those more far-reaching changes. Given our organization’s status as the largest representative of foster youth in California, if not the nation, we are uniquely positioned to help propel broader positive reforms. As such, CLC is actively engaged in local, statewide and national legislative and other reform efforts and has also spearheaded initiatives to enhance public awareness within our community of the issues and concerns facing foster youth.

 

 

THE CHILDREN’S PROJECT-Children’s Legal Issues Clinic
UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA LAW SCHOOL           
University of Southern California                  
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0071
Telephone:       (213) 740-2574
Website:          http://weblaw.usc.edu/why/academics/clinics/cli/index.cfm

 

Associated with a Law School                                                                      
100% Children's Law

 

Throughout this two semester course, the clinic represents children and their interests in such legal and administrative proceedings as guardianships for abused and neglected children, adoptions of foster children by their foster parents, and special-education entitlements for children with physical or emotional disabilities. Clinic students receive their first case at the beginning of the semester and immediately begin working under the supervision of a clinical instructor. As students become more acquainted with the relevant law, additional cases are assigned. Each student has the opportunity to focus on one or more types of cases of particular interest. All students gain experience in family-law related cases such as adoptions and guardianships for children who have no parents to care for them. In addition, the following are examples of other areas in which students can choose to participate: special education, legal problems of teens (pregnancy, domestic violence, emancipation, etc.), issues surrounding conditions of incarceration of minors in juvenile facilities, or public school disciplinary/expulsion hearings, among others.

 

 

CHILDREN'S RIGHTS PROJECT
PUBLIC COUNSEL LAW CENTER
601 S. Ardmore Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90005-2323
Telephone:       (213) 385-2977
Fax:                 (213) 385-9089
Website:          www.publiccounsel.org

 

100% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

Public Counsel is the public interest law office of the Los Angeles County and Beverly Hills Bar Associations. It is the largest pro bono law firm in the U.S. The Children’s Rights Project is a Public Counsel program that provides free legal and advocacy services to children and youth. The Project is staffed with eight attorneys, three social workers and two legal assistants. The Children’s Rights Project has many components, including the Adoptions Project, the Pro Per Guardianship Clinic at the Probate Court, the Peace of Mind Project, the School-Based Legal Assistance Project (Teen Legal Clinic and Community Legal Clinic), the Dependent Children’s Tort & Guardian Ad Litem Program, and the Education Rights Advocacy Program. Staff also provides assistance to youth emancipating from foster care, legal representation to abused and neglected children on immigration cases, and guidance to pregnant and parenting teens.

 

Staff provides legal representation, general counsel and advice, resources and referrals on child-related issues. Cases are assigned to in-house attorneys, volunteer attorneys, and law student interns. The project provides technical support to lawyers, policy makers and service providers who work with children and youth. The Children’s Rights Project offers free educational and training materials on child-related issues, and has written many brochures on legal topics relevant to youth. Staff also offers seminars and workshops to bench officers, attorneys, social workers, foster and adopting parents, probation officers, schools, health care workers, and state and county government agencies.

 

 

DISABILITY RIGHTS LEGAL CENTER
LOYOLA LAW SCHOOL
919 Albany St.
Los Angeles, CA 90015
Telephone:       (213) 736-1031
Fax:                 (213) 736-1428
Email:              DRLC@lls.edu
Website:          www.disabilityrightslegalcenter.org

 

10% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

Disability Rights Legal Center is a separate non-profit organization that was established in 1976 to assist the disabled in obtaining the rights available to them under the law. In association with Loyola Law School and with the help of private attorneys, the Center has brought significant cases concerning school access for disabled children, special education, the right of disabled parents to have custody of their children, and dependent’s benefits for the children of veterans.

 

The Center provides training to law students on an ongoing basis through Loyola Law School, and training is provided to volunteer lawyers as it is needed. The directing attorney and the staff attorney teach classes at Loyola and students there may sign up for a clinical program operated by the Center. Pro bono attorneys are recruited through law firms and personal contact. When a client has a particular need, the Center will recruit an attorney who specializes in that area of the law. A number of volunteers are alumni of the clinical program. Volunteers may work independently or team with a staff member. They often are assisted by students on both individual and impact litigation matters.

 

The Education Advocacy Program represents families of students with disabilities in special education proceedings, including Individual Education Plans meetings, mediation due process hearings, and government complaints. DLRC also provides monthly Education Advocacy Workshops to teach people about special education and an Education Advocacy Manual, a step-by-step guide to assist parents in advocating for their children.

 

 

EAST BAY CHILDREN’S LAW OFFICES
7700 Edgewater Drive, Suite 210
Oakland, California 94621
Telephone:       (510) 496-5200
Website:          http://www.ebclo.org/

 

East Bay Children’s Law Offices (EBCLO) was founded in 2009 to represent children and youth in the juvenile dependency court. Since that time, EBCLO's program has expanded to include the representation juvenile justice cases and education matters including special education and school discipline. Committed to the need for high quality legal advocacy for children, EBCLO's multi-disciplinary team of attorneys and social workers take a holistic approach to providing clients with a voice in the decisions affecting their lives both in and out of court.

 

 

ESPERANZA IMMIGRANT RIGHTS PROJECT
1530 James M. Wood Blvd., Box 15095
Los Angeles, CA 90015
Telephone:       (213) 251-3505
Fax:                 (213) 487-0986
Website:          http://esperanza-la.org/

 

50% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

Esperanza Immigrant Rights Project is a program of Catholic Charities of Los Angeles, Inc.

 

Esperanza is the only LA-area organization to provide free legal assistance to immigrant youths in all of the following five program areas:

 

  1. 1. ORR shelter for unaccompanied minors in Fullerton, CA (administered by Crittenton Services)
  2. 2. ORR federal foster care program in Fullerton, CA (administered by Crittenton Services)
  3. 3. ORR “unaccompanied refugee minors” (URM) program in Fullerton, CA (administered by Crittenton Services)
  4. 4. ORR shelter for unaccompanied minors in La Verne, CA (administered by David & Margaret Home for Children)
  5. 5. Minors released from government custody to LA-area sponsors

 

Esperanza provides the following pro bono legal services to minors in removal proceedings:

 

  • Conducts “Know Your Rights” classes for detained minors;
  • Conducts interviews with detained minors to screen for defenses against deportation;
  • Represents in Immigration Court proceedings vulnerable minors who cannot be released from detention while their deportation proceedings are pending;
  • Matches minors with pro bono counsel from the local private bar;
  • Acts as friend of the court at the Los Angeles Immigration Court Juvenile Docket to advocate for detained minors; and
  • Advocates for more humane treatment of minors in immigration custody.

 


INNER CITY LAW CENTER
1309 E. 7th St.
Los Angeles, CA 90021
Telephone:       (213) 891-2880
Fax:                 (213) 891-2888
Website:          www.innercitylaw.org

 

The Inner City Law Center was established as a nonprofit organization in 1980 to provide representation to inhabitants of Los Angeles’ inner city area. A portion of the Center’s clients are children. Clients are referred to the Center from social service agencies, health care professionals and other attorneys in the community. The Center also works with health care professionals and psychologists to prepare cases. In addition to individual representation, the Center also brings impact litigation and class actions. Recent cases include habitability and government benefit issues.

 

 

LEARNING RIGHTS LAW CENTER
205 S. Broadway, Ste. 1008
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Telephone:       (213) 489-4030
Fax:                 (213) 489-4033
Email:              leticia@learningrights.org
Website:          www.learningrights.org

 

Originally part of the Western Law Center for Disability Rights, the Learning Rights Law Center became a separate non-profit in organization in 2005. Its sole focus is to ensure students have equitable access to the public education system. Learning Rights helps low-income students at risk of or involved in the child welfare and/or juvenile justice systems; students with learning disabilities and/or learning difficulties; and students not accessing the public school system because of language, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, homelessness or inadequate facilities.

 

Learning Rights programs include advocacy for the educational needs of children in the juvenile justice and foster care systems and students with learning disabilities; the Rez Ed American Indian Program to train tribal representatives; the School to Prison Reversal Project, a pilot project in the San Fernando Valley to reduce the number of youth with learning disabilities entering the juvenile justice system; and the Cross-Over Youth Project, which aims to prevent at-risk youth in the foster care system from “crossing over” to the delinquency system by offering a multidisciplinary approach to evaluating their needs.

 

Learning Rights is also home to the Los Angeles Medical-Legal Collaborative for Education (LAMCE), in partnership with Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles. Started in September 2005 with the generous support of an Equal Justice Works Fellowship, LAMCE continues to provide legal services for special education issues. Currently, LAMCE works with health professionals in several departments of Children’s Hospital to provide education advocacy and legal representation to patients with education needs.

 

 

LEGAL ADVOCATES FOR CHILDREN & YOUTH
LAW FOUNDATION OF SILICON VALLEY
152 N. Third St., 3rd Floor
San Jose, CA 95112
Telephone:       (408) 293-4790
Fax:                 (408) 293-0106
Website:          www.lawfoundation.org

 

100% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

A project of the Santa Clarita County Bar Association Law Foundation, Legal Advocates For Children & Youth (LACY) addresses the problems of children and youth in crisis through legal advice, advocacy, representation, referral, education, and systemic reform. Three staff attorneys and a social worker combine their skills to provide free, comprehensive legal and related social services to children and youth. LACY’s areas of priority are the care, custody, and education of minors. Special programs offered by LACY are the Educational Empowerment Project, Emancipation Project, Guardianship Project, Homeless and Runaway Youth Project, Safe Families Project, Family Court, and a School Based Legal Clinic.

 

LACY utilizes volunteer attorneys, paralegals, law students, and mental health professionals to reach over 1200 children and youth a year. Cases are closely monitored through staff contact with the volunteers. Training is provided as needed, usually through four training sessions a year.

 

Referrals to LACY are through client word-of-mouth, Juvenile and Probate Courts, schools, social service agencies, health care professionals, other attorneys, and nonprofit organizations serving runaway and homeless youth.

 

 

LEGAL AID OF MARIN
30 N. San Pedro Rd.
San Rafael, CA 94903
Telephone:       (415) 492-0230
Fax:                 (415) 492-0947
Website:          www.legalaidmarin.org

 

20% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

In 1995, Legal Aid of Marin began a program focusing on children’s law in order to provide comprehensive legal services to the families that they serve. One full-time staff attorney, four MSW graduate students and a clinical social worker work as a team with pro bono attorneys. Clients are referred to the program from juvenile court, social service agencies, schools, health care professionals, and other attorneys in the area, as well as Legal Aid’s own intake system.

 

Legal Aid of Marin relies on a large network of volunteer attorneys, law students and other professionals in the community to assist with its caseload. Over 250 volunteer attorneys work with Legal Aid of Marin each year, and the children's law programs draws its volunteers from this larger pool. Law students gain valuable experience helping with the intake of new clients. Training is offered to volunteers and others twice a year through sessions where CLE credit is available.

 

Legal Aid of Marin is involved in bringing impact cases on behalf of children. Some examples include: keeping a shelter open for homeless families; utilizing the closing of military bases to assist the homeless; wages and housing for dairy farm workers (directly affecting 87 children); habitability issues; and an installment sales class action.

In early 2007, the Marin Medical-Legal Partnership made its debut. In collaboration with the Marin Community Clinics (MCC), Legal Aid of Marin began scheduling intakes in MCC’s Greenbrae and Novato clinics.

 

 

LEGAL SERVICES FOR CHILDREN, INC.
1254 Market St., 3rd Floor
San Francisco, CA 94102
Telephone:       (415) 863-3762
Fax:                 (415) 863-7708
Website:          www.lsc-sf.org

 

100% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

Established in 1975, Legal Services for Children, Inc. (LSC) serves children in a myriad of legal issues through the recruitment and training of volunteer lawyers. Clients are referred through the courts, schools, social service agencies, health care professionals, other attorneys and other kids. Volunteers are recruited through local bar associations, law firms, law schools and word of mouth. Volunteers usually handle cases independently, providing written updates to the staff on case progress. Training programs occur approximately six times a year, depending on demand and LSC hopes to be able to offer CLE credit soon. There are seven staff attorneys who are assisted by social workers when preparing cases. LSC also brings impact litigation cases including a class action to enable children to attend school when living in the school district with non-parents or non-guardians, and a case involving the right of children to appropriate investigation and disposition of child sexual abuse.

 

 

LEGAL SERVICES OF NORTHERN CALIFORNIA
517 12th St.
Sacramento, CA 95814
Telephone:       (916) 551-2150 ext. 7110
Fax:                 (916) 551-295
Email:              exec-office@lsnc.net
Website:          www.lsnc.info

 

10% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

Legal Services of Northern California (LSNC) has been in existence since 1956 providing civil legal assistance to low income persons. LSNC handles approximately 1,500 children’s cases a year. LSNC is staffed by 20 attorneys and 15 paralegals. Approximately 10% of the caseload is devoted to children’s law cases. Clients in children’s cases are referred from the Juvenile Court, social service agencies and other attorneys in the community. Volunteer lawyers and law students are recruited through local bar associations, local law firms and law schools, seminars and direct mailings. Training is provided on an as-needed basis and CLE credit is available. Staff members call volunteers about potential cases and monitor progress through follow-up calls and written requests for updates.

 

 

NATIONAL CENTER FOR YOUTH LAW
405 14th St., 15th Floor
Oakland, CA 94612
Telephone:       (510) 835-8098
Fax:                 (510) 835-8099
Website:          www.youthlaw.org

 

Founded in 1970, the National Center for Youth Law (NCYL) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to use the law to improve the lives of children and youth affected by poverty. NCYL represents poor children in major litigation and provides specialized legal assistance to attorneys and other child advocates who work on behalf of poor children and youth. The center has numerous materials available (bibliography available upon request), and publishes Youth Law News bi-monthly.

 

NCYL’s advocacy on behalf of poor children concentrates on six specific areas: protecting abused and neglected children; expanding access to health care for children and adolescents; securing public benefits to meet the special needs of children; increasing access to housing for families with children; addressing the special problems of children living in institutions; improving child support collection. The center also promotes laws and public policies to improve the conditions in which poor children must live.

 

NCYL has co-counseled cases with numerous firms across the country, including the San Francisco firms of Morrison & Foerster, and Farella, Braun & Martal, and the Salt Lake City firm of Junes, Waldo, Holbrook & McDonough. Pro bono attorneys are recruited through the Litigation Assistance Partnerships Project, Trial Lawyers for Public Justice, and private attorneys interested in child advocacy.

 

NCYL houses the Child Support Project. The Project operates as a resource center of information on child support issues for legal service organizations and child support advocacy organizations. The Project provides bi-monthly mailings containing information for advocates and custodial and noncustodial parents. The Project also does legislative and administrative advocacy.

 

 

PENINSULA FAMILY ADVOCACY PROGRAM
LEGAL AID SOCIETY OF SAN MATEO COUNTY
The Natalie Lanam Justice Center
Sobrato Center for Nonprofits - Redwood Shores
330 Twin Dolphin Drive, Suite 123
Redwood City, CA 94065
Telephone:       (650) 517-8904
Fax:                 (650) 517-8973
Email:              fguzman@legalaidsmc.org
Website:          www.peninsulafap.org

 

The Peninsula Family Advocacy Program (FAP) is a collaboration between: Legal Aid Society of San Mateo County, Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital, and Ravenswood Family Health Center. FAP also partners with the San Mateo Medical Center and its affiliated clinics. FAP strives to improve the health and welfare of pregnant women, low income children and their families. FAP provides legal representation, advocacy and education to help address underlying causes of poor health among low-income children.

 

FAP provides free legal services and representation to pregnant women and low-income families and from San Mateo County and Santa Clara County whose children are receiving medical care at these sites. All families regardless of income or county of residence will receive referrals to appropriate resources. FAP currently helps clients with the following legal issues: disability benefits, domestic violence, family law (child custody, divorce, paternity), guardianship, health insurance and medical bills, housing, public benefits, and special education.

 

 

VOLUNTEER LEGAL SERVICES PROGRAM
BAR ASSOCIATION OF SAN FRANCISCO
465 California St., Ste. 1100
San Francisco, CA 94104
Telephone:       (415) 982-1600
Fax:                 (415) 477-2390
Website:          www.sfbar.org/vlsp

 

10% Children’s Law
Does Use Volunteer Attorneys

 

The Volunteer Legal Services Program (VLSP), sponsored by the Bar Association of San Francisco, is an active provider of pro bono legal services to the community, including services to children. Programs that focus on children’s issues began in 1994, and include: foster care assistance for immigrant children involving applying for a special visa to enable them to obtain permanent U.S. resident status; and “SSI for Kids” which trains attorney and non-attorney advocates to assist parents of indigent and at-risk children with disabilities in applying for SSI. VLSP also has a Guardianship Program which assists families by helping the non-parent caretaker of a child be named as the child’s legal guardian. The majority of requests involve grandparents or other relatives who have been primary caretakers since the child’s birth. Clients are referred through the Juvenile Court, social service agencies and the schools. VLSP’s small staff assists and coordinates a large number of volunteers who handle cases, provide expertise to other volunteers as mentors, assist in preparing and presenting trainings, staff clinics and provide personal as well as telephone consultation services to clients. Impact litigation is referred to pro bono counsel, typically a large law firm.

 

 

YOUTH LAW CENTER
417 Montgomery St., Ste. 900
San Francisco, CA 94104-1129
Telephone:       (415) 543-3379
Fax:                 (415) 956-9022
Website:          www.ylc.org

 

100% Children’s Law

 

The Youth Law Center was established in 1978 to focus attention on legal issues affecting children at-risk of being or who are in out-of-home care, specifically those in the juvenile justice and child welfare systems. The staff of eight lawyers teams with volunteer lawyers and law students to provide representation in impact litigation cases nationwide. YLC also conducts legislative advocacy, education and technical assistance. Clients are referred through social service agencies, health care professionals, other attorneys and community groups. The Center offers self-trainings for CLE credit to volunteer lawyers. The Center has been responsible for significant impact litigation matters across the country. The Center’s staff is supplemented by health care professionals, psychologists and juvenile justice/corrections specialists when needed.