Donate old cell devices, help save livesPublished 12:35am Saturday, December 14, 2013
By Dianne Bentley
For the past year and a half, I have championed domestic violence awareness and prevention throughout the state of Alabama. I believe that healthy families are the foundation for healthy communities. While many of us are decorating our homes and excitedly planning for friends and family to visit this holiday season, some people are instead experiencing stress and anxiety during this time.
Nationally, domestic violence cases decrease during the holidays. Women try to make their relationships work so they can stay home during the holiday season instead of being in a shelter. However, according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence and the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network, the number of domestic violence cases increases immediately following the holidays.
I discovered a program through Verizon Wireless that allows all of us to play a role in decreasing the incidence of domestic violence in our state. Through HopeLine, Verizon collects no-longer-used phones, batteries and accessories in any condition from any wireless service provider. The phones are then refurbished or recycled and the proceeds go to support the efforts of law enforcement, advocacy groups, shelters and other non-profits across the country via refurbished phones or cash grants.
I encourage each of you participate in HopeLine for the Holidays with me. As you undertake your holiday preparations, if you come across a cell phone or any wireless accessories just taking up space in a drawer, turn them in to HopeLine. If that special someone gifts you with a new device, donate the old one. The process is simple – just take the phone to a company-owned Verizon Wireless store or visit the HopeLine page on Verizon’s website to print a pre-paid mailing label.
During the holidays and year-round, domestic violence shelters in Alabama count on community support to help them care for the victims they serve. By donating your old devices, you can help save someone’s life. Together let’s bring hope to these victims this holiday season.
Dianne Bentley is the First Lady of the State of Alabama.