Building our Capacity to Serve Colorado’s Young Adults
It was through the generosity of Impact100 in 2019 that the Rocky Mountain Children’s Law Center (RMCLC) truly built our Young Adult Legal Advocacy (YALA) work. Through this program, we provide free legal help for young people exiting the foster care or juvenile justice systems, or experiencing homelessness or other life instability. Our team supports young people to expunge juvenile records, obtain identification documents and navigate landlord-tenant disputes, among other legal issues — all focused on empowering young people by serving as advocates in their corners and supporting them to pursue their life goals.
2022 has already brought exciting growth to our Children’s Law Center team — and YALA in particular! Lauren Langan, who previously served as staff attorney for the YALA program, stepped into the role of Deputy Executive Director for our organization in January. We are so thrilled to have Lauren helping to guide our YALA efforts, as well as our larger advocacy impact!
In April, we also welcomed a new staff attorney, Ellen Carlson, to the YALA team. Ellen joins RMCLC with a wealth of experience working with young people, most recently as guardian ad litem for children and youth in Jefferson County. Ellen knows the “inner workings” of the child welfare and juvenile justice systems and has a deep passion for working with older youth — both of which will be a significant asset to our work. Ellen has already hit the ground running, presenting on tenants’ rights to two groups of young people in just her second week with our office!
While the last two years have been challenging, especially for the population the Children’s Law Center serves, we are proud to have adjusted and continued all of our programming through the pandemic, serving a total of almost 900 young people and families organization-wide in 2021. The YALA program specifically served 85 young people and conducted six legal clinics in 2021. We anticipate serving 100 young people this year. Every day, through our advocacy, we work to change the trajectories of young people’s lives — making the difference between continued instability and a future of opportunities and access. As a nonprofit organization, support from our community makes this possible. We are so grateful to be a part of the Impact100 Metro Denver community and we thank you for standing behind our advocacy for young adults. We look forward to continued growth and sharing updates of impact along the way!
More information and opportunities to get involved can be found on our website: www.childlawcenter.org.