Victim Assistance Fund

Victim Assistance Fund  --  Support for Survivors

The Support for Survivors fund helps domestic violence and sexual assault victims/survivors address needs related to safety and personal wellbeing.
“Cindy” has decided to leave her abusive boyfriend. She is concerned about custody of their children because he has threatened to take them away from her if she ever leaves him. • “Dawn” fled her home in the middle of the night after her husband threatened her with a gun. He now refuses to leave the marital home or allow her to retrieve her belongings, telling her that she’s the one who left and only his name is on the deed. • “Kim” filed a protection order against her partner for strangling her during an argument. Kim sought medical attention and needs a copy of her medical record for court.

For survivors of domestic violence, the Penquis Law Project provides high quality civil legal assistance at no cost. However, its ability to build strong cases is often impaired by the client’s inability to pay court, service and other fees necessary to substantiate their claims in court and help them and their children escape abuse. Victim/survivors who cannot afford these fees may choose not to proceed with their cases. While court waivers are available, they are not always granted. Donations to the Support for Survivors fund will be used to remove the cost barrier for clients who cannot afford court fees and are not eligible for waivers.

“Karen” calls the hotline stating she was raped that morning but has no way to get to the hospital. • “Beth” was raped by her roommate’s boyfriend. She is afraid to go home and has nowhere else to stay. • “John” was sexually assaulted after a college party. His clothes were surrendered at the hospital as part of evidence collection and he needs clothes to wear home.

For survivors of sexual assault, Penquis subsidiary Rape Response Services offers a 24-hour crisis and support line, accompaniment to medical and legal appointments, support groups and follow up services. Occasionally, victim/survivors of sexual assault have needs beyond the services we have funding to provide. Donations to the Support for Survivors fund will be used to help victims of sexual assault meet their immediate needs, such as transportation to/from the hospital/medical provider, hotel, clothing and/or other personal effects needed as a result of an assault.

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