Boone attorney Dayton Cole, a regular volunteer at the Asheville 4ALL site, recollects a caller who made a lasting impression. The caller was a grandmother desperately seeking a way to connect with her grandchildren, despite difficulties with the grandchildren’s parents. She wanted someone to listen to her concerns, and she needed answers to questions about family law.
“That caller, and many more with whom I talked, said over and over how much they appreciated the lawyers of North Carolina providing that service,” Cole said. “I can’t think of anything the bar has done during my professional career to engender greater goodwill between the profession and the public. I’m honored to be a partner in that.”
Attorneys sometimes worry that they will not have the appropriate experience or knowledge to be helpful to callers. In fact, every attorney has something valuable to give — time and a willingness to listen. If a caller’s question falls outside an attorney’s area of expertise, that attorney can raise a hand and get help from a floating volunteer who specializes in that specific practice area. Volunteers also refer callers to on-site Legal Aid of NC representatives and to the North Carolina Bar Association’s Lawyer Referral Service.
This year, the 4ALL Statewide Service Day will take place on Friday, March 2. Hundreds of attorneys already have signed up for a three-hour shift, but volunteers are still needed for most shifts at all locations: Asheville, Charlotte, Fayetteville, Greensboro, Greenville, Raleigh and Wilmington. Last year, attorney volunteers answered over 9,900 calls and even higher numbers are expected this year.
The 4ALL Statewide Service Day is an opportunity for attorneys to work alongside one another to provide service and leadership that profoundly impacts the public. As a program of the North Carolina Bar Foundation, 4ALL is made possible by donations to the Annual Fund and Endowment. Please support the 4ALL tradition of service by volunteering and by making your gift today.