We believe Jackson’s most at-risk population should have their rights and access to their most basic needs protected.
Your support allows United Way of Jackson County to fund Legal Services to very low income individuals and families. This program provides a full range of legal services to qualifying families and individuals, with the goal of meeting basic needs and increasing financial independence. Guan-yin was one of hundreds who found protection because of your United Way support.
Guan-yin had a difficult life in China. She worked very hard with very little reward. She looked to the United States and dreamed of a better life. Desperate, she legally immigrated to Jackson and married a man she met online. It wasn’t the best choice, but she was hoping to make her dream of a better life a reality.
Her dream turned into a nightmare.
Shortly after their marriage, her husband became abusive and isolated her. She had no contact with her loved ones. He wouldn’t allow her to learn English and constantly held over her the threat of sending her back to China with nothing. Somehow she found her way to Legal Services of South Central Michigan. An interpreter was found, and she was able to acquire legal representation for her divorce. Her lawyer discovered that her husband had signed a contract to support his wife when he brought her to this country. He was required to pay her support as part of the divorce. Guan-yin got the ruling she deserved from her divorce. She was able to move into her own apartment, she’s learning English, and she has a job. She has escaped tyranny twice and is now on her pathway for financial stability and success.
Over the past 18 months. 526 clients at Legal Services have had successful outcomes. Your United Way support has helped mediate agreements, avoid evictions and protect women like Guan-yin from abuse.