NEED HELP?

Volunteer

Are you passionate about disability rights? Do you want to help make sure others can use and enjoy the full extent of their rights, and have the best quality of life?

People with disabilities still face prejudice and bias in many ways. People with disabilities are stereotypically portrayed in movies and the media. They still face physical barriers to schools, housing and to voting stations; and often, they lack affordable health care.

The promise of the ADA isn’t fully realized yet, but the disability rights movement continues to make steps towards empowerment and self-determination for Americans with disabilities.

By helping Disability Rights Wisconsin, other disability organizations/groups, and grassroots efforts, you help to ensure equal access and equal treatment of people with disabilities.

Make change happen, Volunteer

Ways to Volunteer at Disability Rights Wisconsin

Volunteer or Intern at one of our Offices

Volunteering or interning here can be fun and rewarding, and you can really make a difference!  Here are just some examples of work you could do:

  • Provide legal support to inmates that contact us for help
  • Assist with our annual Children Mental Health Matters event
  • Learn valuable paralegal skills by assisting lawyers and advocates on cases
  • Perform legal research and writing as a law clerk
  • Support staff with technology use and assist our IT Team
  • Get exposure to public policy, marketing and fundraising

Volunteer as an Attorney with the Victim Advocacy Program

The Victim Advocacy Program offers several volunteer opportunities for attorneys.  We work with pro bono attorneys throughout the State of Wisconsin to provide legal services to people with disabilities who are victims/survivors of crime.  Legal services can include assistance with restraining orders and other family law matters, advance directives, anti-discrimination matters, benefits issues, and special education issues.

We are also seeking a volunteer attorney to conduct legal research and draft various memos or guides to provide advice and counsel to people with disabilities who are victims of crime.  Strong writing and researching skills are required; familiarity with family law and victims’ rights is desirable.

The volunteer attorney is expected to volunteer 5-10 hours per week with flexible days of the week and hours.  For volunteers living in the Madison or Milwaukee area, the attorney can utilize a computer, desk, and internet at our offices.  However, volunteers who are unable to travel to either office or who wish to volunteer from home should also apply.  Start date is flexible depending upon the volunteer’s availability.  This is the perfect opportunity for an attorney who is currently retired, a stay-at-home parent, or family caregiver and looking to connect with the legal community while making an impact in the lives of people with disabilities.

Some issues the attorney could assist in researching include:

·         Child support

·         Relocation issues in child custody cases

·         Child abuse/neglect cases where the parent and/or child has a disability

·         Restoring rights while under guardianship

·         Removing a guardian

If you would like to apply for this opportunity, please send a cover letter and resume to Amy Devine, Pro Bono Coordinator, Disability Rights Wisconsin, 131 W. Wilson St., Ste. #700, Madison, WI 53703 or email to amyd@drwi.org.

If you would like to learn more about any of our volunteer attorney opportunities or have any other questions about the Victim Advocacy Program, please contact Amy Devine at amyd@drwi.org or 608-267-0214.  All volunteers are required to complete a criminal background check.

Assist in the Medicare Part D Helpline

Whether you want to directly support clients or work behind the scenes, you can at the DRW Medicare Part D Volunteer Program! Volunteers can help in many ways:

  • Answering calls from people asking about eligibility for Medicare Part D and prescription drug plans
  • Searching for prescription drug plan options on the web based on client input
  • Entering client data into Excel
  • Helping the Project Coordinator as needed with other projects

Medicare Part D Volunteers are needed from September 1st through December 7th each year, in the Milwaukee & Madison areas, only.

Help People with Disabilities Get to the Polls

Disability Rights Wisconsin partners with the Wisconsin Disability Vote Coalition to:

  • Encourage organizations to put on local get-out-the-vote drives and outreach.
  • Educate the disability community about voting rights and access issues.
  • Let representatives know that people with disabilities are voters and a growing voter bloc.
  • Increase voter turnout among people with disabilities and their allies.

You can help before and during the elections.

Become a Board Member or Serve on One of our Committees or Coalitions

The DRW Board is made of consumers, family members, and others who have a concern for people with disabilities. The Board makes strong efforts to ensure that its membership is balanced as to the gender, racial, and geographic distribution of people in Wisconsin.  Consider joining our board to help us advance the rights of people with disabilities.

We also have a few committees that we need people to join:

  • PAIMI Advisory Committee –  make positive change by working to protect and advocate for the rights of Wisconsinites with mental health diagnoses.
  • Quality Education Coalition – work with other parents, teachers and advocates to improve special education in Wisconsin.
  • Milwaukee Mental Health Task Force – help identify issues faced by all people affected by mental illness. Help improve mental health services, give consumers and families a strong voice, and reduce stigma.

Volunteer at Disability Rights by completing a Volunteer Application or contacting us by email or phone 608-267-0214.

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