News Releases
June 08, 2017

Boston Bar Foundation Awards $960,000 in Grants to 20 Local Organizations

Press Release

June 7, 2017 (BOSTON, Massachusetts) – The Boston Bar Foundation (BBF), the charitable affiliate of the Boston Bar Association , announced today that it will provide $960,000 in grants to 20 community organizations that work to provide legal services to those in need. Nearly half of the funding comes directly from the BBF, including all proceeds from its annual John & Abigail Adams Benefit, the largest legal aid fundraiser in the state. The remaining funds are derived from the Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts (IOLTA).

The grantee organizations administer legal aid to the most vulnerable and underprivileged members of the population, such as the homeless, domestic violence survivors, at-risk children, and veterans.

“The importance of the work these organizations do simply can’t be overstated,” said BBF President Anthony A. Froio, Managing Partner of Robins Kaplan’s Boston office. “Last year, BBF grantees collectively served more than 38,000 people in need of legal assistance. That’s 105 people a day, every day, for a year. They are immigrants, they are veterans, they are tenants being wrongfully evicted, and they are parents who are trying to advocate for a child with special needs.

“At a time when funding for legal services at the federal level is in jeopardy, it is more important than ever for the private bar to support these local organizations,” continued Froio. “The grants are the result of the tremendous success of the John & Abigail Adams Benefit, as well as the year-round support of the BBF’s mission by lawyers, law firms, and area businesses, for which we are most grateful.”

The 2017 grant recipients are:

Casa Myrna Vazquez : Founded in 1977 to provide a safe haven for abused women, Casa Myrna is now Boston’s largest provider of shelter and supportive services to survivors of domestic violence.

Children’s Law Center of Massachusetts : The mission of the Children’s Law Center of Massachusetts is to promote and secure equal justice for low-income youth through advocacy and legal services.

City Life/Vida Urbana : City Life/Vida Urbana is a grassroots community organization working towards racial, social and economic justice and gender equality by promoting individual empowerment and developing community leaders.

Community Legal Services and Counseling Center : Community Legal Services and Counseling Center provides free civil legal aid and affordable psychological counseling to low-income people.

Greater Boston Legal Services : The oldest and largest legal services program in New England, GBLS provides free legal assistance to as many low-income families as possible, helping them secure some of the most basic necessities of life.

Irish International Immigrant Center : Irish International Immigrant Center assists immigrants from Ireland and from around the world as they integrate into American society.

Lawyers Clearinghouse on Affordable Housing and Homelessness : Lawyers Clearinghouse provides pro bono legal services to nonprofit organizations and to individuals who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.

Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice : The Lawyers’ Committee is a civil rights organization established in 1968 with a mission of combating discrimination based on race and national origin.

Massachusetts Advocates for Children : Massachusetts Advocates for Children works to ensure equal opportunities for children who have disabilities, are low income or are racially/culturally diverse.

Massachusetts Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health : MassCOSH unites workers, unions and community groups with environmental and health activists to end dangerous work conditions, organize for safe, secure jobs, and advocate for healthy communities.

Massachusetts Law Reform Institute : The mission of Mass Law Reform is to advance economic, racial and social justice through legal action, policy advocacy, coalition building, and community outreach.

MLPB: Formerly known as Medical Legal Partnership Boston, MLPB’s mission is to equip healthcare, public health and human services teams with legal problem-solving strategies that promote health equity for vulnerable people.

MetroWest Legal Services, Inc. : MetroWest Legal Services protects the rights of elderly, disabled and other disenfranchised people and assists them in obtaining legal, social and economic justice.

Northeast Legal Aid : Northeast Legal Aid delivers civil legal services to the poor and elderly in Northeastern Massachusetts.

Political Asylum/Immigration Representation Project (PAIR) : PAIR works to promote the rights of unjustly detained immigrants and to secure safety and freedom for asylum-seekers fleeing persecution.

Prisoners’ Legal Services : Prisoners’ Legal Services promotes the safe, humane and lawful treatment of Massachusetts prisoners through civil rights litigation advocacy, counseling and public outreach.

Project Citizenship: The goal of Project Citizenship is to partner with community-based organizations to help eligible, legal permanent residents overcome barriers to becoming U.S. citizens.

Veterans Legal Services : Veterans Legal Services provides free and accessible legal services to ensure the self-sufficiency, stability and financial security of homeless and low-income veterans.

Volunteer Lawyers Project of the Boston Bar Association : The Volunteer Lawyers Project provides free civil legal assistance to low-income residents of Greater Boston through the pro bono services of private attorneys.

Women’s Bar Foundation : The Women’s Bar Foundation provides free legal assistance to victims of domestic violence, low-income seniors seeking end-of-life documents, and low-income individuals involved in housing disputes.

As the charitable affiliate of the Boston Bar Association, the Boston Bar Foundation’s mission is inspired by the values of professionalism, service, compassion and responsibility. The mission of the BBF is to promote justice by funding and promoting innovation in legal services, enhancing access to justice for the underserved and supporting the public interest activities of the bar.