The Indianapolis Bar Foundation will boost its impact in the community in 2021 as it awards $60,000 in grants to both a community partner through its $35,000 Community Empowerment Grant and local attorneys through its Crisis Empowerment Grants, which will total $25,000.
The Community Empowerment Grant, formerly known as the Impact Fund Grant, has been awarded since 2011, while the Crisis Empowerment Grant was created in 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the related needs of both low-income neighbors seeking legal assistance and local practitioners seeking to build their practices amid economic challenges.
Applications are now being accepted for both grants, with deadlines of June 1 for the Crisis Empowerment Grant and June 30 for the Community Empowerment Grant.
About the Crisis Empowerment Grant
While in the beginning stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Indianapolis Bar Foundation Board of Directors converted the 2020 Community Empowerment Grant to the Crisis Empowerment Grant in order to assist members of the association and the community as they navigated the economic effects of COVID-19. This year, the board voted to re-institute the $35,000 Community Empowerment Grant as well as again offer Crisis Empowerment Grants totaling $25,000 to continue to assist IndyBar solo and small firm practitioners. These grants will provide up to $2,500 each for lawyers who perform services on pre-screened cases from local service providers to assist central Indiana families in need of legal services.
Crisis Empowerment Grants cover the hourly expenses of solo and small law firm practitioners of $100 per hour, up to five hours per client, devoted to assisting referred clients who meet program criteria. The grant application, which can be found at indybar.org/grants, provides information on what types of services will be considered and who qualifies for services. Reporting will be required for receipt of grant dollars, and client feedback may be sent to evaluate the effectiveness of the program.
Attorneys interested in applying for these grants should do so by June 1, 2021. Additional information and application instructions are available here.
About the Community Empowerment Grant
The Community Empowerment Grant serves as a vehicle to maximize the financial generosity of Indianapolis Bar Foundation donors and to provide members of the Indianapolis Bar Association with compelling opportunities to donate their time through pro bono service. This grant is an important tool in the foundation’s efforts to fulfill its mission: to advance justice and lead positive change in Indianapolis through philanthropy, education and service.
In 2021, $35,000 will be awarded to an outside entity through the Community Empowerment Grant. Non-profit organizations and government entities are eligible for this grant, and the funds must be used to support a program that reinforces the foundation’s mission and presents opportunities for members of the central Indiana legal community to participate on a pro bono or modest means basis. Additional criteria and application instructions can be viewed online at indybar.org/grants.
Previous recipients of the grant include the Center for Human and Victim Rights, Kids' Voice of Indiana, Indy Reads, Peace Learning Center, the Joseph Maley Foundation, the Military Assistance Project of Indiana Legal Services Inc., Reach for Youth and the Health and Human Rights Clinic at the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law.
Organizations interested in applying for this grant should go here to access additional information and application materials. Applications are due June 30, 2021.