MBF Awards $1.9 million in Grants for Legal Aid Programs across Massachusetts

The Massachusetts Bar Foundation (MBF) recently awarded $1.9 million in grants through its annual Interest on Lawyers Trust Accounts (IOLTA) Grants Program. This year’s grants will fund 82 programs conducted by 56 nonprofit organizations throughout Massachusetts.

MBF IOLTA grants support projects that either offer civil legal services to people who could not afford them, or improve the administration of justice in the Commonwealth. Grants providing direct legal services include support to domestic violence programs, special education advocacy, humanitarian immigration assistance, and homelessness prevention.  Grants to improve the administration of justice include efforts such as court-connected mediation and lawyer of the day programs.

“We are proud to be able to support such worthy programs, knowing they will make the maximum use of these funds to make legal assistance more accessible to those in need,” said MBF President Robert J. Ambrogi of Rockport. “We couldn’t do it without the generous support of our Fellows, almost 100 of whom volunteered their time and expertise to review grant applications and make funding recommendations to the MBF Trustees.”

Funds for these grants are provided by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court’s Interest on Lawyer’s Trust Accounts (IOLTA) Program. The Massachusetts Bar Foundation is one of three charitable entities in Massachusetts that distributes IOLTA funds.

Although available funds for IOLTA grants have declined by over 77% over the last several years, the MBF is pleased to be able to support many of its longtime grantees as well as to provide funding for two new programs – the Older Youth Advocacy Project of Boston CASA and the Small Claims “Wage Theft” Project of Justice at Work.  More information about all funded programs is available here.