The Land Projects
We hope to create land projects for mothers and their children patterned after Boys Town, where mothers can engage in cooperative businesses and childcare via flexible work activities, educate themselves and their children, manage their legal cases as needed, and live safely in private dwellings on site.
The Yale Project:
Library / Educational Support Center
We hope that attorneys interested in pro bono and community service will help us create and staff a library and educational support center so that mothers throughout the USA may call in and receive the legal support they need in preparing briefs for their cases.
National Drives And Caravans
In 2008, The Custody Project conducted a Nationwide Drive to raise funds for our mothers and their children, to bring attention and support to the plight these families often face.
We look forward to conducting many future drives, covering our country's major freeways during the summer, preferably including the July 4th week, as an acknowledgment of the independence these mothers finally achieve for their families.
There are several ways to pitch in and help, and the simplest is to donate online while we are passing through your part of the country.
National NonProfit Day Times Two USA
We support the institution and celebration of National NonProfit Day twice a year, in which all nonprofits are supported by businesses and corporations donating to charities and patterned in their giving after State Giving Days, Make a Difference Day, and Belk.
Twice a year, Belk hosts a charity sale to benefit charities. On those days, from 6-10 am, prices are slashed 20-70% and an additional $5 per item goes to charities. It is a triple win, for Belk, for the participating nonprofits, and for the shoppers. To read more about their philanthropic business model, click here.
Give Big (The Seattle Foundation), Alabama Gives Day, Colorado Gives Day, and Minnesota's Give to the Max raise whopping amounts for charities during the 24-hour periods designated to benefit their charities. Created by USA WEEKEND Magazine and with the support of HandsOn Network and Newman's Own, Make A Difference Day is celebrated each year on the 4th Saturday in October. It has been advertised as the nation's largest day of volunteering, rallying millions in a single day to help change the world. These philanthropic forerunners presage National Nonprofit Day Times Two USA ... is within expression.
Federal Witness Protection
Throughout our country, some mothers and children, some families, suffer extreme domestic violence, molest, and abuse. Survival is predicated upon escape and steps, initiated to separate from the perpetrator inflicting harm, will be taken. To preserve the safety of their children and themselves, some mothers file restraining orders. Domestic violence against children and mothers can be diminished and, at times, prevented through strong court orders, clear communication, and by maintaining public surveillance of the endangered families when within a sensitive community where many eyes are watching protectively. However, for some families, such controls are useless or impossible. Worse, some custody and visitation orders, when defiant of domestic violence concerns, force mothers and children to live, by geographical restraint, within dangerous proximity so that parent/child contact can continue to occur. Unfortunately, continuing domestic violence and threats upon the lives of mothers and their children can also occur, and garden variety restraining orders are ineffectual in these cases.
Usually, mothers will frantically seek protection from multiple sources, police, the courts, domestic violence agencies, and other venues when they are under threat. But when a family is being stalked and marked for death, none of these agencies can guarantee 24-hour safety to them. In the past, three options available to such families have been to be hidden in a battered women's shelter, to go underground, or to strike out in self-defense. The latter alternatives can result in complete removal of custody by a retaliatory court unable to grasp the extreme danger such families suffer. A better option to invoke is when the relocation of such families with new identities is warranted and effected through our Federal Witness Protection Program, expanded to protect those enduring domestic violence, abuse, and/or molest.
When a bullying ex-partner faces separation, his assaults can include pressing two life-threatening items upon pain of death: (1) if he cannot have this woman and this mother's affections, no one else will – even if that means the extinction of her life, and (2) he will seal the strength of his will with the lives of his children. To obtain his objective and maintain absolute control, the lives of the mother and his own offspring are forfeit. Some mothers remain silent, perhaps because they are unaware of possible options they can invoke. Some, however, do desperately appeal for protections from enforcement agencies available to them, including the police, the courts, child protective services, and district attorneys.
Even when court personnel respond favorably, well-intended but timid restraining orders cannot safeguard families in these situations. So, some districts place these families on the 10 most endangered of the town or metropolis, trying to provide extra protections, not continuously, but when possible. The police may place a watch on the home, or try to respond immediately to their emergency calls, and the court may issue its stay-away order. But inadequate measures cannot protect these families from constant and imminent harm, and sketchy surveillance makes the family a sitting target for violence.
Complicating and undermining their safety, courts, taking an inverse position, have been known to place restraining orders on the families themselves, ordering them to live close to those who are threatening their lives. This harm is done to seriously endangered families to effect ongoing, unsupervised, visitation contacts between the ex-partner and his progeny on a regular basis, and this measure completely removes any hope of safety for these families. Four outcomes predictably occur. The children remain at risk and the mother attempts to flee with them to safety – either underground or, if possible, out of the country. If caught and placed before an unsympathetic and retaliatory court, she faces the threat of immediate loss of custody to the perpetrator, loss of contact with her children, and a prison term for kidnapping. Another scenario devolves when a court, punitively cracking down, imposes even tighter geographical restraints upon a doomed quarry well within the sights of an ex-partner's unleashed fury. Mothers and their children, endangered, remain, as ordered, forced to comply with orders placing the children constantly in harm’s way. Unable to secure protection anywhere, some of these mothers have been known to put themselves and their children in a garage, in a running car, and quietly expire.
Another unfortunate option develops when murder occurs. If the mother or one of the children commits murder, even when in self-defense against the perpetrator, it is still an action which, had adequate protections for this family been in place, had they been permanently removed from harm, and had they been safe, might well been proved unnecessary. Worst, still, are cases where the mother is murdered, or the mother and her children are exterminated by the perpetrator because the latter continued to have easy access to his prey. Some ex-partners, almost as an afterthought, then kill themselves – as an ultimate repudiation of change, a final act of cowardice, or to avoid growth and accountability. Sometimes the headlines will flash: father kills the children and their mother, than takes his life, too. Variants include killing the mother only, killing the children only to punish the mother, and killing the mother and children, and then being taken into custody, where continuing attempts at self-annihilation are pursued. Again, had healthy separation been enforced, the extinction of life could have been avoided.
A fourth option is twisted survival based on endurance. Families which succeed in respecting the court’s orders, do so at cost to life and limb. Battered families unnecessarily enduring violence face unending traumatic stressors. There is a price which must be paid when a family is forced to comply with orders which compromise life, and its name is: unacceptable.
Domestic violence gives a strange twist to custody cases because, when the suffering that the mother and children are subjected to is not acknowledged, perceived, or taken seriously by the courts, their behaviors can be misinterpreted, resulting in the rending asunder of the mother and children's safety, in removing custody from a loving mother, and placing the children into a permanent state of abuse and molest. Worse yet, are the cases where the children, sometimes the mother and her children, die, and would not, had sustained and caring public opinion and sound laws made their welfare and safety paramount, their suffering avoidable, and their deaths preventable. Typically, these are cases where death threats are made upon the lives of the children and their mother.
The perils these mothers face can be alleviated. Relocation of such families with new identities is warranted. Our Federal Witness Protection Program can be expanded to embrace and protect such innocent families, and they deserve our assistance.
To help move these visions and dreams into accomplishments, please contact us.
To help move these visions and dreams into accomplishments, please contact us.