Moran Center, An Evanston-Based Legal And Social Work Nonprofit, Now Offers Services In Rogers Park For Students And Parents
ROGERS PARK — The Moran Center for Youth Advocacy, an Evanston-based nonprofit providing legal and social work services for children and families, is now offering services in Rogers Park.
The Moran Center offers services to help children and families from falling into the criminal justice system. It began branching out into Rogers Park about a year ago through Equal Justice Works, a program that offers two-year legal fellowships to recent law graduates so they can work with groups to provide legal services.
“There’s no brick wall down Howard,” said Patrick Keenan-Devlin, the center’s executive director. “There’s so much connection between” Evanston and Rogers Park.
The center’s work in Rogers Park focuses on education advocacy and restorative justice. Through Equal Justice Works, its fellows and staffers provide support, advocacy, legal information and representation for residents who need support navigating the education system, said Andy Froerich, who is spearheading the program and is an Equal Justice Works fellow and education attorney with the Moran Center.
“If a student is facing some sort of exclusionary discipline, being suspended, expelled … we can provide information, support, advocacy, representation,” Froerich said. “It really is mainly supporting parents who have students that are diverse learners, who are struggling in school and need different services.”
Expanding into Rogers Park has been a three-step process: community outreach, providing resources to parents and students and offering direct legal representation, Froerich said.
“At a really local level, our work is all about deconstructing the school-to-prison pipeline that excludes children from their schools and proper educational resources,” Froerich said. “It’s helping parents navigate a really complicated education system — that doesn’t just exist in Chicago but … can be really daunting and intimidating.”
The group’s first six months in Rogers Park focused on community outreach, Froerich said. That meant developing relationships