Because of your support and partnership, all of us at the DC Bar Foundation look back at 2018 with gratitude – and forward to 2019 inspired and energized.
This week we celebrated the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., whose passionate belief in equality for all individuals is the most central part of our mission and work. As we reflect on last year’s successes and eagerly anticipate what’s ahead, I would like to share with you two key milestones that stand out in our fight for equal access to justice:
1. For the first time ever, our Loan Repayment Assistance Program (LRAP) was fully funded. This means that we were able to fund every legal aid attorney who sought our help in paying their educational debt. Supporting talented public interest lawyers in managing their financial realities means a stronger legal aid sector, providing continuity of high-caliber services in our community. When civil legal aid can attract and keep skilled lawyers, more of our most vulnerable neighbors get the representation they need.
2. Our Foundation team grew in order to provide even more support to our partners serving low-income neighbors. Our new team members include an Evaluation and Impact Manager, a Grants Manager, and an additional Programs Officer.
As we step into 2019 and begin a strategic planning process, we are increasingly outcomes-focused. By investing in an independent evaluation of the Civil Legal Counsel Projects Program (CLCPP), we prioritize learning how the program can be improved to better support our grantees and the residents they serve. This will be the most extensive grant program evaluation to date, and it is the first evaluation to focus on program outcomes. We are committed to learning new things and meeting the future together with you.
This year, the Foundation is poised to expand our impact, making a tangible difference in the lives of our neighbors in need. Your support and partnership makes it possible. Thank you!