First Lady Dianne Bentley makes Donation to Hopeline in Recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month

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Left to Right: First Lady Dianne Bentley, Correctional Captain Deidra Wright, Corrections, Alabama Department of Corrections Commissioner Kim Thomas and Corbitt Mizell, Verizon District Manager.

Left to Right: First Lady Dianne Bentley, Correctional Captain Deidra Wright, Corrections, Alabama Department of Corrections Commissioner Kim Thomas and Corbitt Mizell, Verizon District Manager.

domestic violence featuredMONTGOMERY – First Lady Dianne Bentley on Wednesday continued her efforts to help victims of domestic violence by donating another 1,300 cell phones to HopeLine from Verizon.  After Wednesday’s donation, Mrs. Bentley has now delivered more than 10,000 phones for HopeLine from Verizon since 2012.

“I am excited to reach such a great milestone with HopeLine and to continue my partnership with the Department of Corrections,” Mrs. Bentley said. “It is my hope that the 10,000 phones donated will make a difference in the lives of Alabamians and help end domestic violence.  We have many programs throughout our state that work with victims.  For those who are affected by domestic violence, there is help, hope and a way out.”

hopeline-logogif-70d3313ea547aa02HopeLine is Verizon Wireless’ national cell phone recycling and re-use program.  HopeLine collects no-longer-used wireless devices and accessories – all models, from all wireless carriers – which can then be refurbished, recycled and/or sold.  Proceeds benefit victims of domestic violence via cash grants to domestic violence counseling and support agencies.  Also, refurbished phones – complete with 3,000 minutes of wireless service – are provided to local domestic violence organizations or local government and law enforcement agencies for use with their domestic violence clients.

First Lady Bentley, who supports the cause of domestic violence awareness and prevention through a number of initiatives, first learned of HopeLine in early 2012 and challenged Governor Robert Bentley’s cabinet members to collect phones for the cause.  In just one month, the First Lady raised 2,500 phones, due in large part to a significant donation from the Department of Corrections, which had previously disposed of cell phones confiscated from inmates.  Since then, the Department has continued to partner with Mrs. Bentley and donated all confiscated phones in its 29 facilities to HopeLine.

Kim Thomas

Kim Thomas

“As concerned law enforcement officers, the Alabama Department of Corrections is pleased to offer our continued support to victims of domestic violence through the efforts of the First Lady and HopeLine,” Alabama Department of Corrections Commissioner Kim Thomas said.  “Our correctional officers confiscate illegal cell phones on a daily basis.  In a prison setting, these phones are a real danger and a source of criminal activity.  Our officers combat their illegal use, and we are glad to donate them a very worthy cause.  It is our goal that every cell phone we confiscate and donate represents a positive step in assisting victims of domestic violence.”

Verizon has also provided tens of thousands of dollars in HopeLine grants to domestic violence organizations across the state that help victims end the cycle of abuse.  More than twenty organizations across the state have received grants since Mrs. Bentley began her work with HopeLine.

domestic violence month“We applaud First Lady Bentley’s tireless efforts, which are making a difference for domestic violence victims and survivors in Alabama,” Jonathan LeCompte, President of the Georgia/Alabama Region, Verizon Wireless said. “The phones and accessories she’s helped collect have been turned into support for those affected by domestic violence in Alabama via HopeLine phones or cash grants donated to nonprofit organizations across the state, from Florence to Dothan.”

October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month.  All month long, Mrs. Bentley has worked to raise awareness of domestic violence in hopes of ending the cycle.  Earlier this month, she held a candlelight vigil at the Governor’s Mansion to honor those who have been a victim of domestic violence.

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