The New Hampshire Community Bail Fund frees people who are stuck in jail before being tried for any crime. In many cases, they are accused of misdemeanors like trespassing, shoplifting, and drug possession.
Despite being innocent until proven guilty, they are unable to get out of jail because they can’t afford bail—sometimes as little as $50. Most of the people we work with are held at Valley Street Jail in Manchester. Many need treatment for mental illness or substance use disorders, which they are often unable to receive in jail.
In 2020, we paid 16 bails. In 2021, we paid 47, in 2022 we paid 192, and we’re on track to pay more than 250 in 2023. While the majority of the bails we pay are eventually returned to the fund once our clients’ cases are resolved, it often takes 12-16 months or more to get our funds back. So we depend on supporters to help us continue our work in the face of ever-increasing bail requests and slow bail returns.
- Provides bail for people being held in New Hampshire jails, with a focus on the Valley Street Jail in Manchester
- Collaborates with other community organizations and agencies to connect clients with services they need
- Works for an end to cash bail and the transformation of the criminal legal system
- Is a small team of unpaid volunteers
- Is a project of Unitarian Universalist Action New Hampshire
- Is part of the National Bail Fund Network
If you prefere to donate by check, please make the check out to our fiscal sponsor, Unitarian Universalist Action NH. Please write “bail fund” in the memo line and mail to:
NH Community Bail Fund
c/o UU Action NH
P.O. Box 3862
Manchester, NH 03105
If you’re interested in volunteer opportunities with the fund or if someone you know is in jail and can’t afford to pay bail, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.