|HJWT is a HOLISTIC multi-service program that works with women from the initial interview and Relief From Abuse order through self-sufficiency and independence. We provide consultations for victims in rural areas who are referred by VICTIM ADVOCACY GROUPS, HOTLINES, the courts, LAW ENFORCEMENT, DOCTORS, nurses, teachers, and by those who contact us directly. Unlike most attorneys who expect clients to come to in-town offices, HJWT attorneys sit in a woman’s kitchen, or at other locations, where it is safe and where the woman is at ease. They talk with her as a peer, so she is not intimidated by talking with someone who does not understand family violence or the culture in which she lives. This approach enables the HJWT attorneys to obtain the information needed to present the client’s legal issues and also helps alleviate the fear the victim has of facing her abuser in the courtroom. During these consultations, the HJWT attorneys address safety planning, family and individual needs, the legal process, and they provide appropriate resource referral.From her own childhood, and from her leadership skills, Wynona realizes that this holistic multi-service approach of assisting rural victims often is the key to women first escaping the abuse and then moving forward to improving the quality of their lives and their children’s lives. The best measure of the success of the HJWT model is that few (5-10%) of the women served have returned to their abusers or entered other abusive relationships. Since 1998, almost 10,000 women and children have received an entire spectrum of services from HJWT.
One of Wynona’s favorite comments is, “Once women leave their abusers they grow and blossom.” Some clients have gone on to higher education and new careers. Some women have started their own businesses ranging from making and selling quilts to starting a massage therapy service. Other mothers have purchased new homes. Most importantly, all have wanted to reach out and help others.
HJWT offers free legal services:
Toll free phone line – (877) 496 8100 or (802) 685 7809
Legal Representation for Relief From Abuse (RFA) Hearings
Legal Representation for Child Support
Divorce and Parentage Issues
Custody and Visitation Issues
Civil Legal Services
Benefits for Housing Needs
Assuring Appropriate Educational Needs of Children