Quigley, LSC Chair Join LAF to Announce Pro Bono, Technology Grants to Help Seniors and Enhance Text Message Access to Legal Services

October 15, 2015

WASHINGTON – Illinois Congressman Mike Quigley and Legal Services Corporation Chair John Levi will join leaders of LAF (formerly Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago) on Oct. 19 in Chicago to announce that the legal aid provider will receive more than $300,000 in LSC grants to help low-income seniors and expand text message access to legal services.

With a 24-month, $239,207 Pro Bono Innovation Fund grant, LAF will partner with the Center for Disability and Elder Law to adapt their pro bono workshop to help low-income seniors access important services, including powers of attorney for health care and property, living wills, and transfer on death instruments.

LAF will also collaborate with Illinois Legal Aid Online to create an eLearning curriculum that will be available to any volunteer attorney in Illinois.
In addition, LAF is receiving an LSC Technology Initiative Grant (TIG) of $70,750 to integrate SMS texting into the statewide legal services website.  The project will expand access to legal information through the use of text messaging.

“Legal Assistance Foundation in Chicago does amazing work, helping people living in poverty with free professional legal services,” said Rep. Quigley (IL-05). “The grants that LAF is receiving will help seniors obtain legal services in their time of need, and will expand access to legal information through the use of text messaging. The promise of justice for all is an empty one without access to legal assistance, and I will continue to advocate for grants such as these through my role on the House Appropriations Committee.”

LAF is one of 15 recipients of LSC’s $4 million Pro Bono Innovation Fund, a competitive grant program that invests in projects that identify and promote replicable innovations in pro bono for low-income legal aid clients. This is the second year LSC has awarded the funds.

Funds for LSC’s $4 million TIG program are allocated by Congress annually to support innovations in technology and to expand access to justice.

The TIG program, which is in its 16th year, awarded 36 grants this year.  

The news conference begins at 11 a.m. at the offices of LAF, 120 South LaSalle Street, Suite 900, Chicago, IL 60603

Contact: Ruby Isom, risom@lafchicago.org, 312-347-8391

Legal Services Corporation (LSC) is an independent nonprofit established by Congress in 1974 to provide financial support for civil legal aid to low-income Americans. The Corporation currently provides funding to 132 independent nonprofit legal aid programs in every state, the District of Columbia, and U.S. territories.