Rachel Coalition seeks volunteers for its Court Advocate Program

ESSEX COUNTY, NJ — Rachel Coalition, the domestic violence division of Jewish Family Service of MetroWest NJ, is seeking volunteers for its Court Advocate Program. This 40-hour hands-on training program educates participants to assist domestic violence victims with emotional and administrative support as they await their restraining order hearing in Essex County Family Court in Newark. 

Training sessions begin Wednesday, Oct. 26, from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. No formal legal experience or education is required for this volunteer position. Volunteers will have an opportunity to observe family court proceedings. Volunteers who have already taken a 40-hour domestic violence training class can qualify for an abbreviated training. For further information on the Court Advocate Program and to schedule an interview, contact Sherri Goldman at sgoldman@jfsmetrowest.org

Each year, the Essex County Family Court Domestic Violence Unit in Newark presides over more than 6,000 cases of domestic violence. Since 2006, Rachel Coalition has placed trained court advocate volunteers in the Essex County Family Court waiting room to explain the restraining order process to victims; assist with the initial application; provide information about community services such as legal help, counseling and shelters; and offer emotional support.