Ricky Adams, Associate at RMG
Role within Organization: Committee Member
Number of Years/Months Involved: 2-3 Years
Why do you volunteer your time specifically with this organization?
I volunteer because the organization’s mission is to help seniors in Baltimore City, which is something I am very passionate about personally. The organization is a joint program of the Bar Association of Baltimore City and the Baltimore Bar Foundation, and focuses on a very vulnerable section of the community. People do not realize that the organization provides important services to the local community, including estate planning, utility issues, tax bills, rent issues, guardianships, and other consumer problems that seniors often struggle with. I was immediately impressed with the organization, and found that the services offered were very diverse and had a significant impact on our local community.
Does this organization affect Baltimore as a whole?
We hold seminars and workshops (for example, we have joined forces with attorneys at Exelon who hold clinics and volunteer with helping seniors with their estate planning documents). The organization acts as a connector between legal services and those who cannot afford them. Basically, the organization helps to fill a need where there is a lack of resources and access to justice. The organization actually goes out into the community to educate and assist seniors, by presenting seminars on various legal topics and conducting consultations at home for those who are not able to safely transport themselves.
What is your favorite memory of working with this organization?
The organization holds an Annual Law Day, which is filled with educational seminars, panels, and attended by various local agencies and service providers focusing on issues related to Baltimore City seniors. I was able to go for the first time this year and was humbled and moved to see the looks of joy and appreciation from the people who were receiving help. People lined up at 7:30am for a 9am start and they said that the Law Day event was something that they looked forward to attending every year. During the event, we served a free lunch and breakfast, and for many of the attendees the meals were the only ones they expected to have that day.
If you could do one thing to change the organization for the better, what would it be?
We are lucky to have plenty of volunteers, including many attorneys and law students from the Young Lawyers Section. As a newly barred attorney, I would like to devote more of my time with Senior Legal Services, stepping in to work hand in hand with the clients as a panel attorney. Like most non-profit organizations working to assist an under-served aspect of the community – they could use more funding. More funding means Senior Legal Services will have access to greater resources that can be used to further help the Baltimore senior community. For those interested in learning more about the organization and/or donating, please feel free to go to http://www.baltimoreseniorlegalservices.org/ . Donations can also be made through the United Way.