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Help Rocco Defend the Defenseless
$250 raised
2% of $15k goal
2 contributors
0 days left
Ended Jun 7, 2013
My name is Rocco DeFilippis and I am a recent graduate of law school. During my legal education, I determined that if I were going to practice law for a living, I would have to do it in a way dedicated to providing legal services to those who do not ...
My name is Rocco DeFilippis and I am a recent graduate of law school. During my legal education, I determined that if I were going to practice law for a living, I would have to do it in a way dedicated to providing legal services to those who do not traditionally have access to them. As I take my first steps as an attorney dedicated to serving the poor, I've taken a position with an organization that embodies the principles which I want to define my practice: International Justice Mission.

International Justice Mission (IJM) is a human rights agency that secures justice for victims of slavery, sexual exploitation, illegal detention and other forms of violent oppression. IJM lawyers, investigators and aftercare professionals work with local officials to ensure immediate victim rescue and aftercare, to prosecute perpetrators and to promote functioning public justice systems.

As a legal intern in IJM's Nairobi, Kenya field office, I am going to be fighting for the victims of illegal detention. llegal detention occurs when people are arbitrarily arrested or imprisoned without charge or trial for an indefinite amount of time. Without a voice, victims of this crime can remain trapped in prison systems, where they may suffer disease, malnutrition or abuse. Families also suffer in this separation, and may face severe economic hardship as the result of the imprisonment of a breadwinner.

With incomes for the global poor hovering around $1 to $2 a day, the average poor person cannot hope to pay legal fees if he or she is arbitrarily arrested. Many countries in the developing world do not recognize a right to indigent legal representation, leaving those who cannot afford a lawyer to navigate the legal process without an advocate. Thus, unsubstantiated accusations against poor people may permanently put their liberty at risk without legal representation.

I can't wait to use my training and talents to defend the defenseless, but to do it, I need your help. This position is unpaid and I am responsible to cover all of my own living expenses. I need to raise about $15,000 to support myself during my year with IJM. I am asking for your financial support. Anything you can afford to give will be greatly appreciated. Please contact me if you have any questions. Thank you in advance for your help...together we can work to bring justice to the oppressed in Kenya.
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