[District of Columbia, December 15, 2022] – The DC Bar Foundation will award a record $26.44 million in 2023 to 37 DC legal aid organizations that provide free or low-cost legal assistance to thousands of DC residents facing life-altering legal issues but who cannot afford an attorney. “The Foundation is honored to make grants to these 37 organizations who are tireless in their dedication to delivering legal services throughout the District. Their vital contributions to our city’s civil legal aid network are lifesaving for so many,” says Aracelis Gray, director of programs at the DC Bar Foundation. The DC Bar Foundation’s grants offer critical support to DC legal aid organizations that provide a broad spectrum of civil legal services to those in need. The majority of funds will go towards helping our neighbors in Wards 5, 7, and 8, where there is a concentration of families of four living on an annual income of less than $25,000. This year, we also saw increased requests from Wards 1 and 4, with a significant concentration of Latino residents. More than half of the available funds will support efforts to combat housing-related issues, including eviction and homelessness. Other legal matters supported include employment, domestic violence, family and disability law, and access to public benefits. “This record-breaking cycle of grants would not be possible without the support and partnership of many key stakeholders in the District,” says Kirra Jarratt, chief executive officer of the DC Bar Foundation. “I want to acknowledge the DC Council for its commitment to access to justice year after year for all District residents, as well as the generosity of our individual and corporate donors who support our various campaigns, events, and fundraising appeals. Thank you for supporting the Foundation as it leads the effort to transform the delivery of legal services to make them accessible to all District residents.” There are three funding sources for the $26.44 million awarded. The first stream is an appropriation from the Council of the District of Columbia through a grant from the Office of Victim Services and Justice Grants. These funds support the Foundation’s Access to Justice Program and the Civil Legal Counsel Projects Program. The remaining two funding streams, private fundraising and revenue from the DC Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts Program, support the Foundation’s General Support Grants Program. To read about the DC Bar Foundation’s impact across the District, visit www.dcbarfoundation.org.
About the DC Bar Foundation: We are committed to transforming DC's legal aid network so that all District residents have a fair and equal legal experience. Through our network approach, we actively work to bring together all invested stakeholders to identify and address the unmet civil legal needs of underserved DC residents, create solutions with a critical eye for racial justice and equity, and demonstrate meaningful impact.