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2019 Private Grants Program

Grants to Washington, DC Nonprofits to Provide
Civil Legal Services to Disadvantaged Groups

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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DC Bar Foundation (DCBF)

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

08/24/18 12:00 PM EST


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Grants to Washington, DC nonprofit legal service organizations to provide free civil legal services to low-income populations. Funding is intended to increase access to justice in the District to other disadvantaged people, including but not limited to individuals in correctional facilities, individuals living in or fleeing from violence, and homeless individuals.

Civil legal services must include the individual representation of District residents. It may also include the following:
a. The supervision of such representation;
b. Appellate advocacy on behalf of District residents; and,
c. Policy advocacy in the District that is associated with the representation of individual clients.

Funding will be provided to civil legal aid organizations that have systems in place that align with widely accepted industry standards for promoting quality, efficiency, and effectiveness in the delivery of civil legal aid, including methods for self-assessment to provide feedback regarding the extent to which those systems are achieving their desired purpose.

Proposals that address one or more of the following criteria will be given priority (all other factors being equal):
1. Is likely to expand the number of DC residents who are provided legal assistance.
2. Seeks to avoid duplication of services being provided in the District, in the same issue area, or to the same special population segments as those being proposed.
3. Is likely to make legal assistance more accessible to DC residents.
4. Is likely to expand pro bono participation by recruiting, training, and supervising law firm attorneys to help deliver free legal assistance to DC residents.
5. Is likely to leverage DCBF resources by applying them strategically to expand efforts by other service providers and/or provide services that could not potentially be supported by other funding sources.
6. Will test innovative approaches for achieving the above priorities.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 163210

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Term of Contract:

The grant year will run from January 1, 2019 to December 31, 2019.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Qualified recipients must:

1. Be a not-for-profit DC corporation;
2. Have tax-exempt status under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code;
3. Operate primarily within the District of Columbia;
4. Be located within the District of Columbia; and,
5. Have as a primary purpose the provision of civil legal services to low-income residents of DC.

- An organization meets the primary purpose test if the majority of its total organizational resources and/or legal services department or project are spent on the delivery of civil legal services to low-income District residents without charge.

- “Low-income” is calculated by using the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) income limits that determine the eligibility for District residents for HUD’s assisted housing programs.

- “District resident” is defined as any individual with a residential address in the District of Columbia. DCBF may accept an organization’s reasonable functional alternatives to this definition to the extent that DCBF determines such functional alternatives are consistent with the goal of increasing access to justice in the District for special populations, including but not limited to individuals in correctional facilities, individuals living in or fleeing from violence, and homeless individuals.

Pre-proposal Conference:

A joint information session for organizations interested in submitting proposals for the 2019 ATJ Underserved Areas and Interpreter Bank Grants Program and/or the 2019 Private Grants Program will be held on Wednesday, July 25:

Arnold & Porter LLP
601 Massachusetts Ave NW
Washington, DC 20001
10:00 AM to 12:00 PM

RSVPs are required. Please email the name(s), title(s), and email address(es) of individual(s) attending to by Monday, July 23 to register.

Pre-Application Information:

Applications are due by 12:00 pm EST on Friday, August 24, 2018.

Awards will be announced in mid-December 2018.

Application instructions:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply online:

If you have any questions regarding the Private Grants Program, how to apply, or the monitoring and evaluation processes, please contact or call 202-853-9023.

DC Bar Foundation
80 M Street SE, Suite 100
Washington, DC 20003

P: 202-467-3750
F: 202-467-3753

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Washington, DC