Application for Grant Funding by State Appropriation Parent Education and Mediation Fund
In 2000, the Tennessee General Assembly enacted Public Chapter 889 known as the Tennessee Parenting Plan Law. In developing this legislation, the general assembly “recognize[d] the fundamental importance of the parent-child relationship to the welfare of the child, and the relationship between the child and each parent should be fostered unless inconsistent with the child's best interests.” T.C.A. §36-6-401. The legislation also provided for funding to be distributed by the administrative office of the courts “for the specific purpose of funding the parenting plan requirements pursuant to this part, through the divorcing parent education and mediation fund, which funding includes the costs of court-ordered mediation, parenting education programs and any related services to resolve family conflict in divorce, post-divorce, and other child custody matters.” T.C.A. §36-6-413.
The AOC has approximately $200,000.00 in grant funds available for fiscal year 2012-2013 for the development or continuation of initiatives that will provides these services.* These initiatives may include but are not limited to:
- Recruitment of pro bono attorneys for limited or full scope representation of parents involved in visitation/custody actions before the court;
- Conducting pro se clinic for parents regarding the parenting plan process and description of court process, including referral to pro bono or reduced fee attorney with the goal of obtaining a final court order;
- Interpreters for no cost or reduced fee mediations;
- Education of the community such as lawyers, mediators, and parents regarding the parenting plan process;
- Education costs for the training of Rule 31 bilingual mediators;
- Any related services to resolve family conflict in divorce, post-divorce, and other custody matters.
Proposal submissions must be provided to the presiding judge of the district by April 23, 2012. The presiding judge will then prioritize the proposals that have been determined to be most responsive to the needs in the district and will deliver to the AOC via fax, email or mail all proposals on or before May 7, 2012. If there is no presiding judge, please deliver your proposal to the AOC via fax, email or mail all proposals on or before May 7, 2012. Notification of grant awards will be sent on or about May 28, 2012.
Links to the request for proposals and a grant application form are available below.
The application and any questions should be addressed to:
Claudia M. Lewis
Administrative Office of the Courts
511 Union St., Suite 600
Nashville, TN 37219
(615) 741-2687 ext. 1320; Fax: (615) 741-6285
* Grants dependent upon state funding.