In honor of National Pro Bono Month, we’re highlighting our donors and volunteers who make our work possible. We are grateful for your support, which helps VLSC match trained volunteer attorneys with low-income people in need of critical legal services—services that help them keep their families together, regain financial stability, and feel safe in their own homes. Thank you!
Pamela Jester is the former Director of Continuing Education of the Bar in Oakland. She is also a past President of the Alameda County Bar Association and a huge supporter of VLSC. We asked her to share a bit about herself and why she supports VLSC.
You have been a VLSC donor since 2003 and began giving monthly in 2006. Why did you decide to become a monthly donor?
Donating on a monthly basis is a simple, direct way of supporting VLSC. There are no-end-of-year decisions to make, no fund-raising campaigns to follow and, when using a credit card, the recordkeeping is minimal.
What would you want to share with others about the impact of pro bono work in our community?
Most of us understand that lawyers are the keepers of the keys to the courthouse and to justice. When our society is one in which one party, or both parties, is self-represented in over 80% of family law matters, we know that there is a real problem with access to justice. Without programs like VLSC and its volunteer lawyers, even more people would be cut out of the system.
Congratulations on your recent retirement. What do you plan to do next?
In June of 2015, I was ordained a deacon in the Episcopal Church in the Diocese of California and am now the parish deacon at All Saints Episcopal Church in San Leandro. Deacons have a particular responsibility to serving the poor, the weak, the sick, and the lonely.
Would you like to join Pamela and become a monthly donor? Contact Katrielle Veslenio at (510) 302-2209 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Donate online 24/7 on our website: https://alamedacountyb.wpengine.com/VLSC/Donate/.
This interview was originally published in the Fall 2015 edition of the Volunteer Legal Services Corporation's newsletter. To read the full newsletter, please click here.