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California Western School of Law

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Community Law Project Receives Grant from Price Philanthropies

Grant will support a new free clinic in the City Heights / Mid-City neighborhood of San Diego and increased work in existing City Heights clinics.

San Diego, CA, June 15, 2017 --( California Western’s Community Law Project (CLP) has received a $25,000 grant from the Price Philanthropies Foundation to support the free legal services CLP provides to individuals seeking counsel on immigration and other related issues.

“We are delighted to be the recipients of this generous grant from Price Philanthropies,” said Dana Sisitsky, director of the Community Law Project. “We’ve seen a substantial increase in immigration-related inquiries due to a growing fear amongst immigrants based on new policies from President Trump’s administration.”

The grant from Price Philanthropies will expand CLP’s capacity to assist affected populations in City Heights and Mid-City communities with understanding and responding to changes in immigration law and policy. According to Sisitsky, CLP has already hired an additional part-time staff member to support the efforts.

Price Philanthropies Foundation, one of the foundations that provides CLP annual support, approached CLP earlier in 2017 about providing additional funding to help fill the needs of immigrant communities living in San Diego’s Mid-City and City Heights neighborhoods. Price Philanthropies recognized CLP’s established and committed immigration work in the community and wanted to support the continuation of that work.

About the Community Law Project
The Community Law Project (CLP) is a nonprofit, pro bono legal services organization based in San Diego, California, affiliated with and operating under the 501(c)(3) of California Western School of Law. CLP provides pro bono legal services including legal advice, consultations, and community education in eleven areas of law, and serves more than 1,000 individuals a year through one on one legal services and community education presentations.

The majority of CLP’s services are provided one-on-one at weekly clinics held at five partnering schools and churches in four high-need communities of San Diego County: Downtown, City Heights, Solana Beach, and Lemon Grove. These clinics are staffed by pro bono attorneys, volunteer law students, and experienced supervising attorneys, who work together to assess clients’ issues and give them personalized advice and general information about the legal system. When general legal advice is not enough, clients are scheduled for a follow-up consultation with an attorney who is an expert in the relevant legal field. Because many clients speak little to no English, a Spanish-English interpreter is available at all sites to help facilitate the process.

In addition to providing direct legal services, CLP trains California Western law students as lawyers who in the future may volunteer to represent immigrants. Many of its students stay as volunteers for up to one year and receive hands-on experience in the practice of law, learning what paperwork is needed, how to open a file, take an assessment, research an issue, and more. Furthermore, the student volunteers gain an understanding of the legal and social needs of the community, giving them a desire to pursue pro bono work throughout their careers. Many of California Western’s most committed pro bono attorneys - including immigration attorneys - are CLP alumni. In this way, CLP is creating a new generation of lawyers who donate their time, services, and legal expertise in support of the community’s most vulnerable populations. For more information about the Community Law Project, please refer to

About California Western School of Law
California Western School of Law is the independent, ABA/AALS-accredited San Diego law school that prepares graduates for the practice of law through a carefully sequenced program of study combining traditional legal theory with hands-on learning in real and simulated client environments.

For six years in a row, California Western was named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll and Honor Roll with Distinction, in recognition of the school’s numerous community-focused projects including the California Innocence Project, Community Law Project, Mediation Clinic, Bail Project, and more. Students, faculty, and staff donate more than 20,000 pro bono and service hours each year to nonprofits, clinical programs, and law offices.
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California Western School of Law
Patrick Riedling

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