Wayne Law clinic charity nearly triples goal, helps 10 families


Kathryn Smolinski, left, director of Wayne Law’s Legal Advocacy for People with Cancer Clinic, and Leanne Laramie, a social work intern with the clinic, show off some of the items donated as part of the Winter Wishes drive to help 10 families who are clients of the clinic.

Ten families, including 16 adults and seven children in need, will have a warmer holiday season thanks to a donation drive supported by students, faculty, staff and friends of Wayne State University Law School.

The goal – to provide $3,000 worth of goods to families – was exceeded by $5,875, for a total of $8,875 worth of gifts provided.

The Winter Wishes program, in its sixth year, has helped families who are clients of Wayne Law’s Legal Advocacy for People with Cancer Clinic. This year’s drive brought in donated items, including blankets, boots, coats, gift cards, hats, scarves and toys. Monetary donations were used to buy similar items.

Winter Wishes began in 2012 as the fall semester capstone project of Wayne Law’s Legal Advocacy for People with Cancer Clinic’s designated social work intern.

Leanne Laramie of Windsor, Ontario, the social work intern in the clinic through the Wayne State University master of social work program, led this year’s drive.

“I am overwhelmed with the response from everyone here at Wayne Law. I can’t say thank you enough to everyone that contributed,” said Laramie. “I am so glad we were able to come to together to spread joy this holiday season to so many individuals and families.”

Donations to the charity drive were accepted through Dec. 1. The clinic also had a hot food bar fundraiser in November to raise money. Food was donated by LaPita Fresh.