JusticeMatters 2022 Annual Report
Steadfast In Every Season
Fiscal Year 2022 offered an invitation—an invitation to embrace challenge, strengthening JusticeMatters as we continued implementing our three-year strategic plan toward our ten-year target. In 2021 we laid the groundwork for this phase in our journey, and over the past year we celebrated hard-won victories while navigating a season of significant change.
As we seek justice for survivors of exploitation, their harrowing journeys and heart-centered goals inspire us daily. There is much work to be done, the obstacles are numerous—and our hearts are deeply invested. In order to empower our clients to secure a brighter future, we must carefully cultivate the sustainability of our organization and the well-being of our team.
We’re all in this together!
Year In Review: Fiscal year 2022 Highlights
Strategic Plan Priorities
Although we didn’t accomplish as many goals as we’d planned to this year, we celebrate success in our areas of strategic focus. Our team pulled together and persevered through many challenges. Here at year-end, we’re even more certain we’re on the right track!
Pilot Projects: 1 Launched, 2 Grown
Special Immigrant Juvenile Status Project
In October 2021, we welcomed Mary Beth Reed (Duke Law ’21), who joined our team via a post-graduate legal fellowship to expand our services for undocumented children who’ve experienced abuse, neglect, or abandonment. Over the past year Mary Beth served 45 children and their caregivers, securing legal protections that unlock access to safety, stability, and resources.
Trauma-Informed Design Pilot
Embarking on year two of this three-year partnership with Greenleaf Integrative, we continued to implement trauma-informed design for the well-being of both clients and staff. Libby and LaToya K. received targeted executive coaching, and our full staff received updated psychoeducation for mitigating toxic stress, strengthening resilience, and institutionalizing restorative practices.
Immigrant Legal Defense Pilot
In January we welcomed two talented professionals, Kristy Murrell and Holly Thompson, to staff this two-year project in partnership with the City of Durham. In eight months, we’ve provided legal consultations and referrals to 68 neighbors and represented 40 in removal (or related) proceedings. We’re grateful for the support of stakeholders across Durham who recognize that our undocumented immigrant neighbors are at heightened risk of exploitation. Legal status, and other forms of federal immigration relief, are foundational protections against injustice—promoting the well-being of our immigrant neighbors and the mutual flourishing of our entire community.
We are anchored in celebration! We pursue hope and joy. We celebrate the strength and resilience in our clients, staff, and partners, and we celebrate every victory achieved as we seek justice together.
Record Numbers Served
Our staff provided excellent, trauma-informed legal services at no charge to a record number of clients.
Since launching our client satisfaction survey last fall, 93.5% of respondents indicated receiving Excellent/Good legal service and would recommend JusticeMatters to their friends/family.
This year we welcomed three new staff members—Holly, Kristy, and LaToya M.—with invaluable professional and lived experience. Now we can’t imagine our team without them!
Over the past year, we sent Christy on sabbatical, invested in professional development, piloted a reduced workweek, and began reviewing compensation, benefits, and HR policies in preparation for a comprehensive update.
We’re so thankful to over 200 donors who’ve invested in JusticeMatters this year. Your generous partnership sustains this work. We praise God for His provision through you!
- 1% Earned Income
- 39% Contributions
- 60% Grants
- 10% Fundraising
- 16% Management & General
- 74% Programs
In Fiscal Year 2022, JusticeMatters responded to 1158 calls requesting legal assistance and served a record 575 clients. Some of our clients have survived human trafficking. Many more are at heightened risk of exploitation due to lack of legal status in the United States, lack of legal security in a family, or prior experience of trauma.
We protect the rights of our clients and provide high-quality, trauma-informed family law and immigration services, reducing the risk of exploitation and helping survivors rebuild their lives.
At its core, human trafficking is the exploitation of vulnerability for profit. To effectively address human trafficking, we must address the systems-level issues that create and exacerbate vulnerability to exploitation—and make it harder for certain survivors to rebuild their lives.
At JusticeMatters, we’re committed to centering the voices of our clients and community, elevating what we learn to prevent exploitation and promote better outcomes for all survivors in North Carolina.
Over the past year we:
- Provided targeted advocacy for issues facing our clients
- Furthered strategic anti-trafficking efforts through collaborative initiatives
- Delivered training and education to key professionals and community members
Most fundamentally, human trafficking is the exploitation of vulnerability for profit. Though we each have our own vulnerabilities, some of us are more vulnerable than others. And, for many of our most vulnerable neighbors, legal services are critical—legal services that cost around $3,000-$25,000 on the market.
Over the past year, we continued to provide free, trauma-informed legal services to survivors of human trafficking and those at heightened risk. As confirmed by the most recent statewide legal needs assessment*, our services address two of the most critical legal needs among our low-income neighbors in North Carolina: family law and immigration law.
At JusticeMatters we help our clients secure the legal authority they need to protect and provide for themselves and the children in their care, reducing the risk of future exploitation and increasing opportunities for well-being. As we secure legal status and legal security, we unlock opportunities for our clients to heal, flourish, and pursue their dreams.
We address factors that cause and contribute to vulnerability, reducing risk and strengthening protections against exploitation.
We equip survivors with legal tools to heal and rebuild their lives—to safely report crimes to law enforcement, access medical and mental health services, reunite with family, and secure education and employment.
We promote policies and practices to prevent human trafficking and protect survivors’ rights, addressing the root issues of systemic injustice that create and exacerbate our neighbors’ vulnerability to exploitation in the first place.
Hope For The Future
By 2032, JusticeMatters will serve 5,000 individuals annually, expanding in underserved areas to ensure that survivors of human trafficking and those at heightened risk have access to excellent, trauma-informed legal services. We will advance systems change to prevent exploitation and promote better outcomes for survivors across our state.
The core statement in which we are rooted and grounded
Our foundation is the triune God—Father, Son (Jesus), and Spirit—who as Creator is the bedrock for justice and the equality of all people, as Redeemer suffered the ultimate injustice to reconcile us to God and to each other, and as Restorer is the foundation for flourishing, the source of hope and healing.