Thanks to the most significant participation ever from the legal community, the Legal Aid Foundation of Colorado raised a record $1.6 million in its annual fundraising drive for Colorado Legal Services. The funds will be used to provide necessary legal assistance in serious civil matters for Coloradans who cannot afford counsel.
Lawyers and law firms from across the state stepped up in the name of equal justice to ensure that legal aid remains available to those who need it most. The additional funds raised in the 2013-14 Campaign for Justice will help make up some of the shortfall caused by continued low interest rates on COLTAF accounts, which is another primary funding source for Colorado Legal Services (CLS).
COLTAF funding for CLS has dropped by almost 70 percent over the past five years, from nearly $2.4 million in 2009 to a projected $765,000 in 2014. While the recent fundraising success will not entirely make up for the loss of revenue from COLTAF, LAF Executive Director Diana Poole said the strong support from the legal community is very encouraging.
“Our donors recognize that civil legal aid assures fairness for all in the justice system, regardless of individual financial circumstances,” Poole said. “It’s great to see the private bar coming together to support access to legal help for people to protect their livelihoods, their health and their families.”
Last year, CLS directly served nearly12,000 low-income individuals and families, while providing many more with self-help resources, easily-accessible legal information and state-of-the art interactive forms. CLS also plays a critical role in the development, coordination, support and most effective use of pro bono resources around the state.
About the Legal Aid Foundation of Colorado
The Legal Aid Foundation is the fundraising arm of Colorado Legal Services, which provides free civil legal assistance to low-income Coloradans who are facing serious civil legal problems. For more information, please visit legalaidfoundation.org.