THE BRONX - A new pilot program may help hundreds of immigrants facing deportation who can't afford legal help to remain with their families.

For the first time, detained immigrants who can't afford attorneys will have court-appointed lawyers help defend them against deportation. Lawyers say the program is the first of its kind in the country.

The driving force behind the project is the New York Immigrant Family Unity Project, with the help of a $500,000 investment from City Council.

Immigrants must meet certain financial requirements in order to receive legal help from the program.

Officials say the program has already been helping people for two weeks now, and will continue to do so until November 2014. Officials say they are hoping to expand the program if successful.