Old phones get new homes

First wireless drive benefits domestic violence victims

JONESBORO — Old cell phones and related equipment can be repurposed for a good cause during the months of August and September as agencies partner together against domestic violence.

For the first time Clayton County Fire and Emergency Services is teaming with Clayton County Coalition against Domestic Violence to collect used cell phones. Fire Capt. Walter Barber said the phones will benefit Securus House, a battered women's shelter.

According to coalition statistics, one of three American women report being abused at some point in their lives and 21 percent of full-time, employed adults said they have been a victim.

Donations of working or non-working cell phones, chargers, batteries, headsets and pagers can be dropped off at any Clayton fire station from Aug. 1 through Sept. 30, said Barber. All personal information should be erased from the phones before they are donated.

The equipment is picked up by Verizon personnel as part of the company's HopeLine program. The program allows the donated phones to be refurbished and sold. The funds raised from the sale of refurbished phones are used to buy new ones and to donate airtime to victims of domestic violence, according to Verizon's website.

For more information, contact Dixie Brookins at the Clayton County District Attorney's Office at 770-603-4110.