Jacksonville Area Legal Aid has established an endowment that will provide money to enhance civil legal aid services for children with medical issues.
The endowment was started with donations collected by attorney Michael Freed, who ran from Tallahassee to Jacksonville over six days in June to raise money for JALA.
The legal aid organization plans to raise $1 million over the next five years to fund the endowment.
As part of the Securing Tomorrow Together Campaign, Baptist Health will match JALA’s $1 million with an additional $1.25 million, bringing the total endowment to $2.25 million.
The money will be used to continue JALA’s work through the Northeast Florida Medical Legal Partnership and with Nemours Children's Specialty Care, Wolfson Children's Hospital, UF Health Specialty Pediatric Clinics and Community PedsCare to address health-harming civil legal aid needs in the pediatric patient population.
The endowment principal will be held in perpetuity, while earnings from the invested assets help pay for legal services offered to children, such as access to health insurance and other public benefits, advocacy in family law, consumer protection, immigration and ensuring safe and affordable housing.
“We provide the final piece of the medical triage. Working with the excellent physicians and staff at Nemours, Wolfson Children’s and our other partners, JALA staff attorneys focus on solving the core issues often underlying a child’s pediatric concerns,” said Jim Kowalski, JALA president and CEO of Jacksonville Area Legal Aid, in a news release.
Donations may be made at JaxLegalAid.org/Endowment; or by mail to: Endowment, Jacksonville Area Legal Aid, 126 W. Adams St., Jacksonville, 32202