Fayette County Bar Foundation Awards $32,000 in Grant Funds to Seven Organizations/Projects

On Tuesday, November 19th the Fayette County Bar Foundation awarded $32,000 in grant funds to seven (7) organizations/projects. With this year’s grants, the Fayette County Bar Foundation has awarded grants totaling over $170,000 in the seven years since its inception.

Below is a complete listing of the grant recipients and amounts awarded for 2013-2014.

Fayette County Bar Association Law Camp ($10,000): The FCBA is planning a “Law Camp” in June 2014 for 32 highly qualified rising seniors from Fayette County schools. The participants will be chosen by a committee who will consider grades, essays and recommendations. Scholarships will be available for those with financial need. The camp will be a 7 day, 6 night residential program at UK with tuition of $150 each. They will participate in all-day programs located at the Law School which will include lessons on the judicial system and trial practice and procedure. There will be guest speakers (judges, lawyers) and the students will participate in a mock trial held on the last day.

Legal Aid of the Bluegrass/DV Project ($6,000): Now in its 4th year, LABG sponsors a Domestic Violence project where local volunteer attorneys represent applicants for Domestic Violence Orders during their hearings. LABG does the administrative work, vetting the candidates and providing a client file for the volunteer lawyers with every assignment. The monies will defray the costs of LABG personnel to manage the DV project.

Maxwell Street Legal Clinic ($6,000): Over the past year, the Clinic has assisted immigrant youth eligible under a new category known as “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals” (DACA). Under DACA, youth brought to the US at a young age without legal status – and qualified based on age, school participation or honorable discharge from the military – may be granted two years residence here with deportation withheld and with eligibility for a work permit. The grant monies will go for ongoing operations.

CASA of Lexington, Inc. ($5,000): Unlike a guardian ad litem appointed by the Court, a CASA volunteer works with 1-2 children/families at a time. Statistics show that children with a CASA volunteer spend less time in foster care, experience fewer out of home placements and do better in school. CASA was able to assist 143 children last year who had been abused and/or neglected. Funds will allow CASA to hire a volunteer manager to recruit more volunteers and help with logistics.

Access to Justice-CAT ($2,000): Child Advocacy Today or CAT is staffed by one full-time attorney who provides legal representation to patients at UK Children’s Hospital and their parents. The grant money will help defray the cost of law students assisting the CAT attorney.

Grandparents as Parents Conference ($2,000): The grant money will assist with the cost of the annual Grandparents as Parents Conference which provides training and legal education for those who are or seek to be the primary custodians for grandchildren. Carnegie Center – LARK ($1,000): This program highlights the volunteerism of the local bar, with lawyers volunteering time to read to children at downtown elementary schools such as Booker T. Washington Elementary. The grant money is to be used to purchase the books used in the program.