Free legal aid program changing lives, but future funding uncertain

Story about the benefit of the Consumer Advocacy Project in Marion County, Indiana.

News Story Tim Evans
Indianapolis Star
May 29, 2015
Full story

Organizations mentioned/involved: Heartland Pro Bono Council (IN), Indiana Legal Services (ILS)


The hope, Taylor said, is that these initial success stories will demonstrate “what a dramatic difference (the project) can make in people’s lives” and help attract new funding sources. Their success, or failure, in finding that new money will ultimately determine the project’s fate.

Still, Koch-Martinez and Taylor remain optimistic the necessary money will be found — not only to continue the project at Boner, but also to expand it to other community centers around Indianapolis.

“It’s a very unique project, and it seems to be generating a lot of interest,” Koch-Martinez said. “Seeing what we’ve already been able to do is really energizing.”

Lydia Farris, 44, Indianapolis, is the beneficiary of another of the program’s early successes. She said the value of the free legal help cannot be overstated.

“This program was basically a lifesaver for me,” she said.