Wellness News 4-6

     LANSING, MI – Lutheran Social Services of Michigan (LSSM) is seeking Spanish-speaking foster parents in the Lansing area to provide homes for youths from Central America who are currently in detention in United States immigration centers. These unaccompanied minors, ages 13-17, primarily from Honduras and Guatemala, have been detained by U.S. immigration officials because they are in the country without proper documentation. They need a place to stay while their cases are being processed. Eventually, they will either be granted asylum in the United States or deported to their home countries.
     Because of the limited English of these teenagers, LSSM is seeking homes where at least one parent speaks Spanish. LSSM is being asked to help on an as-needed basis when referrals come in. The agency will license foster homes that qualify for this program. Foster parents will be paid a daily rate to assist in the cost of providing room and board for these youths.
     LSSM is also seeking attorneys willing to provide pro-bono legal services to these young people as they apply for asylum or special juvenile status that will allow them to remain in the United States.
     For more information about refugee foster care program and the licensing process, contact Alta McGee at Lutheran Social Services of Michigan’s Lansing office, (517) 321-7663, or by email, amcge@LSSM.org.
   Lutheran Social Services of Michigan, established in 1934, creates communities of service that meet the needs of people, upholding human dignity, advocating equality and justice. Affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Lutheran Social Services of Michigan spans the Lower Peninsula with 79 programs in 43 cities, including subsidized housing, community outreach, and services for children and families, older adults, refugees, and persons with disabilities. LSSM serves all persons, regardless of race, religion or national origin, as an expression of the love of Christ.
     LSSM’s programs in the greater Lansing area include domestic and refugee unaccompanied minors foster care, adoption, independent living classes for teens ages 14-18, supervised independent living for older teens aging out of foster care, Families First of Michigan in Ingham, Eaton and Barry Counties, and Early Head Start.