We get many heartbreaking emails here at FreeGovernmentCellPhones.net. Many of them come from victims of domestic violence who’ve had to flee their homes and, through no fault of their own, have been ripped away from their parents, children and friends, and desperately need a free cell phone to begin rebuilding their lives. We’re always crushed when we have to respond that there is no program designed to help them.
But now we know what to tell them, where to direct them. Because Verizon Wireless is offering free cell phones, free service and free data plans to victims of domestic violence through a program it calls HopeLine. It’s the company’s own program and not part of the Lifeline Assistance program that we cover so thoroughly here at FreeGovernmentCellPhones.net.
Here’s how Verizon describes the program on its website:
I am a victim of domestic violence. How can I get a phone through HopeLine?
If you are a victim of domestic violence, please contact a local domestic violence shelter, or contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at (800) 799-SAFE (7233) or (800) 787-3224 (TTY) or dial #HOPE from your Verizon Wireless phone. HopeLine phones are distributed only through shelters or social service agencies.
HopeLine is similar to the free government cell phone program in that it offers refurbished and recycled wireless equipment. In addition to that equipment Verizon Wireless offers its wireless services to victims of domestic violence.
One of the things we appreciate most about the HopeLine program is that whoever is in charge of the program really seems to understand the mindset of the abused women the program is designed to help. That is clear when the company explains how a wireless phone help a victim of domestic violence.
“Access to a wireless phone and service, along with a voice mailbox can help victims of domestic violence rebuild their lives, by giving them the means to communicate with family, friends, agency and shelter support staff and current or prospective employers.”
Verizon has done an absolutely outstanding job with HopeLine. In fact, what they’ve already accomplished is nothing short of miraculous. They’ve collected 11.4 million cell phones, donated $29 million in cash and grants to domestic violence organizations, and they’ve donated more than 190,000 cell phones (and the airtime to go with them) to victims and survivors of domestic abuse.
William Gay, an all-star cornerback for the Pittsburgh Steelers of the NFL, has joined forces with Verizon and serves as a spokesman for HopeLine. The project is vital to him because his mother was killed by his stepfather when he was just seven years old.
Watch his touching story in this video. If reading this article didn’t make you line up behind HopeLine, the video will.