Save the Date!
The WAVE Foundation Virtual Gala
Saturday, May 8, 2021 at 6 pm
 
The Gala is our main fundraiser for 2021. More information to follow.
Save the date now!


Legal Hope Updates

The Virtual Help Program
A Partnership with
Microsoft and Perkins Coie


The COVID-19 stay-at-home order put many survivors of domestic violence in greater danger than ever before. Domestic violence deaths quadrupled in 2020 over 2019. The physical closure of courthouses and the inaccessibility of legal assistance exacerbated the dangers to those at home with abusers. In response to this urgent need, the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office asked The WAVE Foundation to establish a program to train more attorneys to help survivors get domestic violence protection orders. Within a few days, we established the Virtual Help Program in partnership with Microsoft and Perkins Coie pro bono departments. Our first training session took place on April 6th, 2020 with over 40 pro bono attorneys, and we helped survivors to successfully obtain protection orders against their abusers all year (and continue to do so in 2021).

Legal Assistance to Survivors
 
Through Legal Hope’s Clearing Records Program, Legal Hope’s Protecting Privacy Program, and our Virtual Help partnership, we provided legal assistance to 75 survivors of sex trafficking, domestic violence, and sexual assault in 2020. Legal Hope pro bono attorneys dedicate countless hours to representing survivors throughout a case. With this help, survivors can rebuild their lives and create hope for their future.
 
Special shoutouts to:
Beth Henderson, Keri Banghart, Mia Little, Michael Wilhelm, Mohana Bhirangi, Michelle Burlington, Dave Heiner, and Becca Potter of Microsoft.
 
Joanna Boisen, Rachel Brown, Rose McCarty, Maalya Ramachandra, Rebecca Shelton, Nicole Mormilo, and Brith Croghan of Davis Wright Tremaine.
 
Leah Medway, Alycia Delmore, Ryan Mrazik, and Rachel Haney of Perkins Coie.
Pro Bono Attorney Trainings
 
Legal Hope staff Carlen McKee and Ariana Orford were very busy in 2020, organizing seven trainings of over 350 pro bono attorneys and bringing the total number of attorneys trained to 550. Thank you to our co-presenters Ben Gauen (King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office), Ryan Mrazik (Perkins Coie), David Martin (King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office), Leah Medway (Perkins Coie), Colleen McIngalls (King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office), and Natasha Willson (King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office). Thank you to the hosts of these 2020 trainings: Perkins Coie, Microsoft, Davis Wright Tremaine, K&L Gates, and the Annual Pacific NW DV Symposium.
New Legislation
 
Legal Hope staff Ariana Orford and Carlen McKee worked with Senator Manka Dhingra and her legislative team to draft new legislation for the 2021 session to change the Washington State law that allows survivors of sex trafficking to clear criminal records. The current law allows survivors of sex trafficking to only clear prostitution convictions. SB 5180 expands the law to allow survivors of sex trafficking, domestic violence, and sexual assault to clear more types of criminal convictions connected to their victimization.
 
It is important for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault to have access to record clearing laws. Studies show that 76 – 81% of girls in the juvenile justice system are victims of sexual abuse and often end up in the system as a result of unaddressed trauma. Survivors of domestic violence are often wrongfully charged with assault when they try to defend themselves from an attack by their abuser.

Supported Programs
5 Conversations Program
Greeks Take Action is a student initiative to prevent sexual violence at the University of Washington led by sorority and fraternity leaders on campus. The WAVE Foundation funded an expert, Melissa Tumas, to work with the students to develop and conduct a prevention program called 5 Conversations for Greek students with the goal of changing culture campus wide.
 
In the fall of 2020, Greeks Take Action conducted a successful (virtual) pilot run of the 5 Conversations program. The goals of 5 Conversations are:
 
  • Reduce the social norms (attitudes, beliefs, perceptions) that are risk factors for sexual and relationship violence;
  • Strengthen social norms that are protective factors supporting healthy relationships;
  • Increase skills and intention to engage in behaviors that support survivors;
  • Interrupt potential harmful situations; and
  • Cultivate an equitable culture in UW Greek chapters.
 
Conducted by Melissa and volunteer peer facilitators, the 5 Conversations pilot program received very positive feedback from the participants (Alpha Chi Omega Sorority, Kappa Alpha Fraternity, and a group of Panhellenic leaders). 
Recognition & Support
 
Bonneville & Seahawks Charity of the Month

Bonneville Seattle named The WAVE Foundation as the Charity of the Month for July 2020. This honor included generous grants from Bonneville and the Seahawks, as well as PSAs on both KIRO Radio 97.3 and 710 ESPN Seattle. Hope you heard Ariana’s interview!
 
Seahawks Women's Association Fundraiser

The Seahawks Women’s Association honored The WAVE Foundation as the fundraising recipient at their 2020 Women of Fall event. We shared the spotlight with Seahawks Legends and spread the word about our Legal Hope Program.
Thank you to Keli Imus and Board member Ashley Ott!
NFL Social Responsibility Grant

The Seattle Seahawks honored The WAVE Foundation as their recipient of the 2020 NFL Social Responsibility Grant. The Social Responsibility grant is offered to encourage NFL clubs to seed projects, fund programs and partner with nonprofit organizations in their markets that support work in the sphere of social responsibility (Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault).
Thank you to Keli Imus and Board member Ashley Ott for all your support!
 
NFL My Cause My Cleats

Tyler Ott, Seahawks Pro-Bowl Long Snapper, selected The WAVE Foundation for My Cause My Cleats. Tyler’s beautifully designed “WAVE” cleats were sold at auction with the proceeds going to The WAVE Foundation.
Many thanks to Tyler and Ashley Ott!
 
Overall Fundraising

Through your generous support of our virtual fundraisers, we raised $138,000 in 2020. Thank you to all our friends and supporters!
Organizational News
Welcome to the New 2020 Members of Our Board of Directors:
 
Molly Betz, Account Executive, Amazon Advertising
Lauren Goldberg, Marketing Manager, Nordstrom
Ashley Ott (Board Vice President), Partner, Vantage Point Financial, LLC
Toni Rende (Student Ambassador), Student, University of Washington
Alex Sprayberry, Data Analyst, Nordstrom
Samantha Winter (Board Treasurer), Senior Vice President, Treasury and Trade Solutions, Citi
 
Welcome to Our 2020 Interns:
 
Hannah Lukomski, Finance Intern, University of Washington, Alpha Chi Omega Sorority
Hayley Barney, Finance Intern, University of Washington, Alpha Chi Omega Sorority
Kris Rastuaskas, Legal Hope Intern, UC Berkeley Law
Ian Harris, Legal Hope Intern, Columbia University Law 
Remembering Darcy Burns-Jelcz
 
On December 18, 2020, we lost our dear friend and supporter Darcy Burns-Jelcz. Darcy was well-known for her incredible work for, and support of, the American Cancer Society as both a Board member and participant in the Relay for Life. As a Key Bank Vice President, Darcy also established an important connection to provide support to The WAVE Foundation from Key Bank for several years. We are fortunate to have known Darcy and will miss her greatly. Click here to donate to Darcy’s Relay for Life page. 
Voices – This issue:
Karla Axell, President, The WAVE Foundation

We are very excited to present our first issue of About Hope! I hope you found it informative, inspirational, and easy to read. We welcome any comments and suggestions to help us improve the content and presentation of this newsletter. Your feedback is appreciated! Every newsletter will feature this column, Voices, written by a volunteer, supporter, or friend of The WAVE Foundation. We hope to highlight different issues related to our work. I get to go first.
 
Since you have read down this far, you now know that, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, The WAVE Foundation had a remarkable year in 2020. Throughout the year, as events were cancelled and venues closed, the demand for Legal Hope services grew. Last spring, at the request of the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office (KCPAO), we began Virtual Help. Partnering with Microsoft and Perkins Coie, we now have dozens of attorneys trained to provide online pro bono assistance to help survivors obtain protective orders. In addition, over 300 attorneys attended virtual training sessions and joined the ranks of our pro bono team, providing assistance through our privacy protection and record clearing programs.
 
While this growth is exciting, it is juxtaposed against the stark reality that the need for Legal Hope continues to grow. Local and national reporting reveals that incidents of domestic violence have increased dramatically as survivors are trapped with their abusers. We need to stay poised, ready, and nimble to respond to this increased need. Our partnerships with Microsoft, Perkins Coie, Davis Wright Tremaine, and K&L Gates are invaluable in this effort, and we are developing new partnerships with other law firms, corporations, and nonprofits that will help us continue to expand the scope, and extend the reach, of Legal Hope.
 
We want to do this right, and we need your help. Managing these programs and this growing effort is a huge undertaking: recruiting and training volunteer attorneys; coordinating and mentoring them as they work their pro bono cases; working with the KCPAO and other nonprofits to make survivors aware of our services; establishing and managing relationships with law firms and corporations; drafting legislation to expand survivors’ rights; coordinating the preparation of a bench book to inform judges of the issues coming before them; not to mention the day-to-day administrative duties of running a nonprofit, fundraising, and outreach.
 
So here’s the pitch: The need for Legal Hope is growing. The knowledge and awareness of our services are growing. But we cannot build the capacity to meet this growing need without your help. At the very least, we need to increase our staff to full-time. We need to add administrative staff to free-up our legal staff to do what they do best. Once the pandemic is over, we will need office space again. The list goes on. We will do whatever we can with what we have, and the more you support us, the more we can do. Survivors are out there needing our help; attorneys are out there ready to be trained to provide that help. Help us connect them. Help us create hope.
 
You will soon be receiving an invitation to join us for The WAVE Foundation Virtual Gala. Please join us! But you don’t have to wait for the Gala to help. Please give now!
 
-         Karla Axell, President, The WAVE Foundation