Victims of domestic violence in West Central Illinois are being offered a helping hand.
Verizon is giving a $100,000 grant to expand the Illinois Coalition Against Domestic Violence Virtual Legal Clinic. The program provides free online legal consultation for victims of domestic violence.
The service was devolved by the office of Lieutenant Governor Sheila Simon.
“Its a very simple idea connection attorneys who want to volunteer with survivors in an area where they need legal help,” says Simon.
“It is one of those duh moments that our children would look at us and wonder why we didn’t figure this out earlier.”
Simon says the $100,000 grant will help more domestic violence survivors in rural areas of Illinois.
“This amount of money is something that can tremendously help in the scaling up process,” says Simon.
“What this is going to do is help us build an infrastructure so that attorneys can easily volunteer their time so that shelter and domestic violence programs can easily connect up.”
Executive director of the Illinois Coalition Against Domestic Violence Vickie Smith says Illinois could use more partnerships like this.
“This really is an opportunity to look at ways business and government and non profits can work together to solve problems in our state,” says Smith.
The clinic is currently available in 16 counties in the State. Simon hopes these funds will allow the program’s reach to extend into 24 additional counties by next year.
For more information about the clinic go online to www.ilcadv.org