Header5a - RH
Issue: Vol 2  # 7
July, 2010   
In This Issue
CINC Training in August ...
Come On Down JFAB 2010 ...
Open the Door ...
Collaborative Effort Kicks Off ...
Advocacy Training Scheduled ...
CINC Training in August

   The Project has a new program to represent abused and neglected children in Jefferson and St. Bernard Parishes

   Many of our old volunteers have expressed an interest in helping, but new Supreme Court rules require special training for this work.
   We are happy to announce a 6-hour training (enough to be qualified) on August 20, 2010. The schedule for the day is as follows:

8:30 am: Registration 9:00 - Noon: Program
Noon- 1:00 pm: Lunch
1:00 - 4:00 pm: Program

   The day-long training will be held at the firm of Krebs Farley & Pelleteri, 400 Poydras Street, Suite 2500 New Orleans, LA 70130.
   Darlene Bewley, who manages the program at SLLS, and Karen Hallstrom, Deputy Judicial Administrator for Children and Families, Louisiana Supreme Court are among the experts in the field who will be speaking at this event.

   To register please email Linton Carney.  Space is limited, so please enroll as soon as possible.

Come On Down for JFAB 2010 ...

   Come on down to the Audubon Tea Room  on Friday, October 1st  at 8:00 pm for the 2010 Justice For All Ball and party with our wild friends!  Lady Justice is 'axing' for you, so buy your single tickets now at: 2010 JFAB Tickets.
Kermit Ruffins & the Barbecue Swingers will be playing some good ole' New Orleans tunes to get you up on your feet. 

   Local restaurants and the Audubon Tea Room will provide food and drink. There will be prizes and more to take home at the end of the evening.

  Corporate sponsorships are still available, please contact Rachel Piercey if you know of any businesses that may be interested in supporting The Project in this way.

   We are still looking for raffle prizes and high-end silent auction prizes.  Again, please drop Rachel an email if you can help in this area. 

   Please continue to watch this space for more details in coming editions, but in the meantime -- join Lady Justice on October 1st because she's 'axing' for you!

Open the Door: Be A Partner for Pro Bono

LA Giving B&W

Please open the door for our clients and volunteers and support The Project by clicking on the Louisiana Giving logo above. 

Become a
Partner for Pro Bono
by checking the
"make this a recurring donation" box on The Project's donation page when you click the above link. Make your Annual Donation over 12 months.

 Help us plan for the future by contacting
Rachel PIercey at 504.581.4043 about the Pro Bono for Life Planned Giving program.

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JFAB 2010

     How lucky we all are to have freedom and independence as we celebrate this month!
    Part of our job at The Project is to help our clients gain a bit of freedom and independence that are often compromised when someone is burdened by a legal problem. So many of our clients tell us that they are "free" to get on with their lives, once our pro bono attorney has resolved their problem. 
    It doesn't seem to matter how small or large the legal issue is - when you don't understand the law, as is the case with many of our clients - your freedom and independence are endangered.  So often on the Client Satisfaction Surveys, we'll read, "I'm so relieved." "I can stop worrying about whether my wishes will be carried out." "I can sleep again." "I can move on with my life now."

    It's hard to imagine that kind of relief -- the real freedom and independence -- that can be created by something as simple as having access to a knowledgeable and caring attorney.  
    As we cross the half-way mark of 2010, let's give some thanks for the freedom and independence we all enjoy, and often take for granted, and recognize that the pro bono work we together do has great value in the lives of our clients and for this community as a whole.  During this month of freedom and independence, let's celebrate that!

    On another note, The Project, its Board, Staff, Volunteers and Supporters want to offer a bit of congratulations to The Project's former Board Chair (2008) Mark Surprenant, Adams & Reese, who received NOBA's President's Award on Thursday, July 15, 2010.    This Award recognizes members of the association who have demonstrated a commitment to community service, high moral and spiritual standards and concern for the social and cultural well-being of New Orleans citizens.

    In good company with many of The Project's former Board members and past Chairs, who previously received this Award, Mark has been, and continues to be a great supporter of The Project.  We are so thrilled to celebrate this with him!  Please take some time to read about Mark's many community efforts here.  Congratulations, Mark!

In celebration,

Rachel Piercey
Executive Director

Collaborative Effort for Oil Spill ...

    A meeting was recently held in Jackson, MS among a coalition of Gulf Coast states' legal service providers and advocates in order to find ways to leverage the Katrina disaster experience to meet the growing need for pro bono legal services.
    As the BP Oil Spill continues to affect communities from Texas to Florida, pro bono organizations expect that a massive number of claims will come from many individuals and small businesses, who will need pro bono legal services in order to wade through the legal morass such disasters create.
   "Although we had no warning when Katrina and Rita devastated the area, we now have an enormous amount of experience in the kind of civil legal issues we'll be dealing with.  We want to make sure that we're right here from the beginning so that citizens and businesses in our community will have access to the resources needed to help them survive, recover and then thrive, " said Executive Director, Rachel Piercey.
   While many potential claimants will hire private counsel, The Project and other legal service providers recognize that many low income individuals and businesses will not have the resources to hire private attorneys or work with an attorney on a percentage basis.  Claimants with extremely low incomes will face too big of an economic hardship, and therefore will need pro bono legal services and a clear understanding of the legal process and their options.
   Working together with a coalition of legal service providers and advocates offers the opportunity to make a greater impact in getting people and businesses back on their feet. The level of claims that will be filed going forward is yet be accurately estimated.
   A press release issued in conjunction with the meeting says it all:
   "Low-income communities have been deeply affected by the serious and lasting economic recession, and they are vulnerable to further devastation due to this most recent ecological disaster. The long-term ramifications to already-depressed industries such as Gulf fishing, hospitality, and allied industry suppliers are only now being seen and will require long-term solutions and the expertise that only local legal services can provide."
   Since the June 25th meeting, representatives of the coalition met with Kenneth Feinberg in an effort to create a partnership that will put the expertise gathered from Katrina to good use in benefitting the citizens of the Gulf Coast states.  At the meeting, Feinberg invited our participation in developing and implementing a fair, fast, transparent and generous claims process.  The group told him about the coalition's claims process work group, and Feinberg said that he will share his draft claims process protocol with the group and invites the coalition's speedy comments.
   We will continue to keep you posted on The Project's involvement in the coalition and our work locally.  If you'd like to make a donation to the work we are and will be doing in this area, please make your check payable to The Pro Bono Project and designate "BP Oil Spill Recovery" on it, or donate securely online at LA Giving, you'll be able to designate on their form.
Regional Oil Disaster Advocacy Training Scheduled ...
    A regional oil disaster advocacy training for public interest lawyers and community advocates will take place on September 20-21, 2010 in Pensacola, Florida.  
   Hosted by Florida Legal Services, Inc. and other public interest law organizations in the Gulf Coast region, the training will feature sessions on the new claims process, public benefits, and other legal matters impacting victims of the BP oil disaster.  
   Invited speakers include advocates from Alaska who worked on the Exxon-Valdez disaster, along with representatives of national and regional organizations focused on environmental and economic justice.
   Sessions also include discussions of the role of pro bono attorneys, cultural competency, community organizing, policy advocacy, and community lawyering principles and practices.
   Space is limited so please register as soon as possible. For more information or to register, please contact Kathy Grunewald.
Our Mission

The Pro Bono Project's mission is to provide free, quality civil legal services to the poor by engaging volunteer attorneys to render pro bono services.
  The Project serves Orleans, Jefferson, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Tammany and Washington Parishes with funding from the Justice For All Ball and other sources.  The Project works in collaboration with other legal and social service providers to improve the quality of life for our clients and our community.