Legal Services Corporation Announces 2018 Pro Bono Innovation Grant Recipients
The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that 15 legal aid organizations will receive Pro Bono Innovation Grants to expand pro bono legal services for low-income clients.
The funded projects will engage pro bono lawyers and other volunteers to better meet the civil legal needs of low-income Americans. The projects offer effective, replicable solutions to persistent challenges in current pro bono delivery systems.
Five of the projects focus on providing representation to tenants in eviction cases. Legal aid organizations in Florida, New York, Vermont, and Wisconsin will recruit and train private attorneys to provide assistance and full representation to clients facing eviction.
Several of the funded projects seek to partner with schools, bar associations, and other community organizations to better reach and serve clients. Other projects focus on streamlining administrative processes and improving volunteer training.
For example, Montana Legal Services Association will use its grant to create a statewide network of retired attorneys to provide advice to low-income clients throughout the state. These volunteers will also mentor and offer litigation support to Montana Legal Services Association attorneys.
Legal Services of Greater Miami will use its grant to enhance its case management system and develop client intake and referral processes in cooperation with a local bar association. A grant to Alaska Legal Services Corporation will help the program recruit and train local community leaders and enlist the support of Indian Child Welfare Act workers, health aides, tribal employees, and law and paralegal students to help expand services to rural areas throughout the state. increased funding for the Pro Bono Innovation Fund to $4 million.
“We are grateful to Congress for establishing the Pro Bono Innovation Fund and for increasing funding by $500,000 this year,” said Jim Sandman, President of LSC. “These grants stimulate more volunteer participation by the private bar, leverage the federal investment in civil legal aid, and allow our grantees to reach more people in need of civil legal assistance.”
LSC awarded these grants from its $4.5 million Pro Bono Innovation Fund. The creation of the fund was recommended by LSC’s Pro Bono Task Force in 2012.
A full summary of the grants awarded and their related projects is on the LSC website.