April's Experience


Older African American woman photo

“April”* is a 60-year-old homeless woman living in a shelter in a rural town. One night, she missed her bus back to the shelter and had to call a taxi. The driver, David, and her chatted and they had a lot in common so they exchanged phone numbers. The spoke over the next few weeks and started to build a friendship. David invited April over to watch a movie at his apartment. When April arrived, David raped her.

April was scared for her life. He had driven her to the shelter, and knew where she was staying.  She went to the local courthouse and was granted a protection order. Seeing how terrified and anxious April was about seeing David at the hearing, an advocate at the courthouse referred April to the VRLC. Having an attorney by her side at the extension order hearing eased April’s fears.  The VRLC attorney secured a one-year extension that included keeping David away from the shelter. Following the hearing, April’s attorney guided her through various options to secure permanent housing, and connected her to a community partner that could help her through that process. April now has her own apartment.


*Names have been changed to protect the anonymity of VRLC clients.