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To fund, support, and improve the civil legal services network of the District of Columbia.
We invest in justice.
The DC Bar Foundation is the leading private funder of civil legal aid in the District of Columbia. It is committed to the vision that residents of the District have equal access to justice, regardless of income. DCBF’s mission is to fund, support, and improve legal representation of the poor, vulnerable, and otherwise disadvantaged in the District of Columbia.
The Bar Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit, was established in 1977 to provide a vehicle for lawyers and law firms to contribute to legal services organizations in the District of Columbia. In 1985, the District of Columbia Court of Appeals established the District’s IOLTA (Interest on Lawyers Trust Accounts) program, which the Foundation administers. In 2006, the Council of the District of Columbia appropriated funds for civil legal services grants and a poverty lawyer loan repayment assistance program (LRAP), designating the DC Bar Foundation as administrator.
Each year, after rigorous analysis, the Bar Foundation awards grants to more than two dozen legal services programs in the District. We use an outcomes-based model that has been developed over the past 30 years to evaluate our grantees in order to ensure that our supporters’ investments have the greatest impact in meeting the highest priority needs of the District’s residents. We also provide LRAP awards to more than 40 poverty lawyers to assist with educational debt that might otherwise prohibit these dedicated advocates from continuing to serve the District's most vulnerable residents.
Since its inception, the Bar Foundation has provided more than $40 million in grants and LRAP awards.
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