By Carol Antman for Island Eye News
Until a few months ago, the desperate population of homeless folks camped under the bridge was the first thing we each saw when we drove downtown. All we could do was reach through our window and give a buck or two and hope that somehow the recipients found solutions to their complex problems. But behind the scenes Charleston Pro Bono Legal Services was bringing lawyers onto the scene. They worked with the City of Charleston Homeless Task Force to provide legal advice and helped find housing for the entire population. It’s just one example of the over 800 cases in our area for which the non-profit organization provides free legal help every year.
In addition to advice, counsel, and document preparation, CPB matches low-income clients with local attorneys to help solve legal problems ranging from custody and adoption to estate planning and landlord/tenant issues. For example, they helped Mr. J maintain a consistent relationship with his son after being denied visitation due to false reports and harassment by the child’s mother. When Ms. O needed a simple will as she approached the end of her life, CPB preserved her estate for her children and ensured their guardianship according to her wishes instead of the children being forced to live with their estranged father.
CPB assisted Mr. A. navigating the labyrinthine appeals process with Veteran’s Medical Care after he was permanently disabled during a routine operation.
What may be a simple case for the volunteer lawyers is often critically important for the hundreds of clients who seek aid each year since the complexities of the legal system can often be confusing and frustrating.
Art on the Beach and Chefs in the Kitchen will be on Sunday, Nov. 13 from 1 to 5 p.m. and will help Charleston Pro Bono Legal Services raise needed funding.
For 17 years the popular fundraiser has drawn hundreds of visitors to Sullivan’s Island for an afternoon house tour replete with over twenty-five artists selling their creations and restaurants offering tasty treats.
This year’s poster artist, Briahna Wenke, sets the mood with her colorful image “Beach Salt.” Chefs from Five Loaves, Roti Rolls, Wild Flour Bakery Salthouse Catering, Tristans, Cafe Catering, Twenty Six Divine as well as a curated selection of packaged local food products from Bulls Bay Salt, Pure Fluff and SnoBar will add their delectable delights.
Large contingents of local fans as well as those from afar come every year to enjoy an afternoon bicycling or driving around the beautiful island visiting historic and interesting properties, sampling cuisine and buying art.
Art on the Beach and Chefs in the Kitchen is an enjoyable way to help our neighbors while supporting the artistic community. With so many situations requiring a lawyer, Charleston Pro Bono Legal Services ensures that the doors of justice are open to all, regardless of income.
Tickets are $40 in advance and available on line at www. charlestonprobono.org or directly from Brown Paper Tickets at: http://artonthebeach.bpt.me. On the day of the tour, Sandpiper Gallery at 2201 Middle Street will have a ticket booth ($45 tickets the day-of) outside where plein aire artists will set the mood for a creatively inspiring day.