Improve Equity In Our Society


By Meredith S. Auten, President of the Philadelphia Bar Foundation.

As President of the Bar Foundation, I have had the opportunity to see firsthand how the legal community united to address the most challenging issues in our community. We are uniquely positioned to help our community through some of its toughest challenges. Our resources, experience, and commitment have the greatest impact when we come together to fight injustice. Moved by the spirit of partnership among this extraordinary legal community, the Foundation promotes the Unified Giving Program, a way for the legal community to unite on the promise of equal access to justice for all. 

Unified Giving allows the Philadelphia Bar Foundation to partner with the legal community to invest in our community and improve equity in our society. Only twenty percent of low-income individuals and families in Philadelphia receive the essential civil legal assistance they need. Barriers to justice ultimately compromise the ability tens of thousands of individuals and families to exercise their basic rights. Unified Giving marshals the collective resources of the entire legal community to bring down these barriers. The partnership between the Foundation, our amazing nonprofit partner agencies on the front lines and our colleagues who have devoted their careers to public interest are critical to delivering on equal access to justice. 

We are so appreciative of all the law firms that have already joined us in our Unified Giving campaign. Your generous donations strengthen civil legal aid and access to justice services across our community. We are proud to partner with and to provide grants to our nearly 40 nonprofit partner agencies who provide essential legal and other support services to those in need in our community. The world of our nonprofit partners improves the quality of life for tens of thousands throughout our region. Together, we can build system-wide capacity to deliver quality legal services to all and to ensure that everyone understands their rights to equal justice under the law. 

Beyond crucial financial support, Unified Giving represents a call to action, and a chance to deliver on the public interest values that have guided so many of us. Unified Giving supports our community's efforts to identify and address inequities in the legal system through the dedication world of our nonprofit partners.

Please plan to join us as we celebrate the groundbreaking work of our nonprofit partners at our annual Access to Jusice Award Ceremony on Thursday, November 9, 2023 at the Fitler Club. We will gather to celebrate the accomplishments of our nonprofit partners in providing critial legal aid to the community, as well as the outstanding pro bono work contributions by our Pennsylvania law firms and corporations. 

I ask you to join us in our Unified Giving campaign so that we can continue to turn the promise of equal access to justice into a reality for all those in our region who so desperately need it. I and our entire dedicated Board and Staff welcome the opportunity to meet with any of you who would like to learn more about what we do to advance our mission of equal access to justice. Please join us!