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debra bogaards

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LEGAL AID OF MARIN
August 22, 2008

Having served on the board of directors of Legal Aid of Marin for over 5 years, I knew what a diverse group of people....ranging from the elderly to the young children...that we serve in our community. However, it was not until I got involved with one of our clients recently that I better understood from the heart what a difference Legal Aid of Marin makes in just one life. My LAM client is a relatively young man and his ailing mother. He is a new dad, with his second baby mama. He used to be in prison, for assorted bad acts (drugs, theft). Now he has found Allah, and has set his own life on a better path. His mother, who is only 9 years older than my 50 years, has been in an assisted nursing facility for quite some time, following hip and other surgeries. The facility has neglected her, perhaps since she is on medicare, and failed to turn her. Now she has very painful and grotesque bedsores that are infected on her bottom, so she can't lay in bed in a comfortable position. She has a catheter, and moans in constant pain. I met both of them in the hospital, where she has been transferred. Not only am I helping them with an elder abuse case, I am a support system for her son, who has no where to turn. He doesn't understand the medical system, so I am meeting with the social worker, to communicate with him. My own daughter had a very serious hospitalization around the same time, so I can empathize with his plight, and he doesn't have my resources or understanding of how to navigate the medical system. While I am only able to provide some insight, I feel that my connection through Legal Aid with my client has made a dramatic difference to a family in my community that is in need of basic support on a very real, and human level. Debra Bogaards (you may use my name)

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

a first hand way. My life has improved by helping a mother and son in my community who deserve basic medical assistance.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

try to get more non-lawyers involved.

More feedback

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

serving a broad community.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

compassionate, devoted and genuine.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

help even more people in our community.

Ways to make it better...

no ifs....

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

funding for its diverse services in the community.

One thing I'd also say is that...

its the best board I've served on, and I've been on quite a few.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2008

MY ROLE:
Board Member & I helped a woman who has been abused by neglect in an assisted nursing care facility, and her son.