The mission of the Washington State Bar Foundation is to provide financial support for programs of the Washington State Bar Association that promote diversity within the legal profession and enhance the public's access to, and understand of, the justice system.
Impact Summary from the Nonprofit Innovation The Bar Association is well suited to test bold, large-scale solutions for narrowing the justice gap and targeting the needs of people beyond the reach of other types of aid. Bar Foundation funding supports innovative programs like WSBA Moderate Means(http://www.wsba.org/Legal-Community/Volunteer-Opportunities/Public-Service-Opportunities/Moderate-Means-Program) which is making legal help affordable for more people. More than 440 participating attorneys have agreed to discount their fees to help modest income households in the areas of family, consumer and housing law. Because this program is a partnership with Washington's three law schools, Bar Foundation funding is helping law students gain practical, real world experience while making a real difference in people's lives. Reach The Bar Association has the widest reach and influence to engage more lawyers in public service. By creating opportunities that make it easier and more rewarding to get involved, the Bar is enhancing the culture of service within the profession. The Bar Foundation provided critical funding to expand the WSBA Home Foreclosure Legal Aid Project, which as of May 31, 2012 has engaged more than 660 lawyers and served 1,758 low to low to moderate income homeowners facing foreclosure. As a result, these homeowners were able to save more than $130 million in Fair Market Value of property and $11.9 million in Equity that otherwise would have been lost in one of the biggest crises to hit Washington state. FocusThe Bar Association is uniquely positioned to move the needle on diversity in the profession. With a focus honed on retention and equality, WSBA is getting at the root of why people leave the profession, so the profession can offer better solutions, and incentives, to stay. The Bar Foundation ensures WSBA has the resources to sustain its Diversity Programs(http://www.wsba.org/About-WSBA/Diversity) .
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