Letter from the President

From Tennessee Justice for Our Neighbors Board President Barbara Clinton

March 25, 2019

It’s well known that helping others helps us feel better about ourselves. So I freely admit that that I have a selfish reason for being part of JFON. And if you want to help for selfish reasons too, that’s quite all right in my book.

Your contribution now to JFON, whether it’s in dollars, time, good wishes, or all three, comes at a time when more than 65 million people across the globe—half of them children—are looking for a home after being forced to leave Syria, Afghanistan, Nigeria, Somalia, Egypt, Ethiopia, Venezuela, Haiti, Iran, Iraq, Guatemala, Russia, Nepal, Eritrea, or other parts of Africa.  Immigrants and refugees in Tennessee come from all of those places—as well as Honduras, Guatemala, and Mexico.

All four of my grandparents came to the U.S. to escape hunger and oppression in their home country. So I know from personal experience that immigrants and refugees who come to the U.S. and work hard can make a good life. I saw how my grandparents’ gratitude for the safety and security they found here compelled them to give back much more than they received. They showed me how giving back not only makes us feel optimistic, but also has the gratifying effect of reminding us that we can change things that matter.   

You can be part of this too, by helping people who are the victims of violence, are afraid, or wish only for the authorization to work legally through free or affordable legal services. A contribution of any size to JFON helps people secure confidence that they can work, drive, attend school, and worship without fear of arrest or reprisal. By supporting JFON’s staff and pro-bono attorneys, volunteers, law students and partners from communities of faith, you help make the world safer and easier for those who were forced to leave home.   

Whether you are the child or descendant of immigrants, or are looking for a way to feel better about our sorry old planet, supporting JFON not only helps families, it helps you too. Thank you in advance for giving the biggest contribution you can.