Consider this: DC has the most lawyers per capita in the US, yet 90% of domestic violence victims seeking legal protection do not have a lawyer. The DC Volunteer Lawyers Project addresses this profound disparity, linking low-income, at-risk clients with skilled volunteer lawyers. To expand the pool of qualified attorneys, DCVLP recruits those not affiliated with law firms (government attorneys, recent graduates, lawyers taking a break from career) and gives them training, supervision, and support to provide free, high-quality legal representation to people in crisis. The group primarily serves clients seeking civil protection orders (nearly 300 in 2014, with an outstanding 90% success rate), and staffs a walk-in clinic where domestic violence survivors can access legal services, housing, and counseling in a single place. DCVLP also represents children in high-risk custody cases where parental mental illness, substance abuse, incarceration, or child abuse has created tragic circumstances. This dedicated team has a long waiting list for its services. Letís help them grow Ė so that no one is turned away.

Headquarters: DC-Ward 3

Where They Operate: DC-Citywide; DC-Ward 1; DC-Ward 2; DC-Ward 3; DC-Ward 4; DC-Ward 5; DC-Ward 6; DC-Ward 7; DC-Ward 8; MD-Montgomery County; MD-Prince George's County; VA-Arlington County; VA-Fairfax County

Age Groups Served: Infants (0-2); Pre-K (3-4); Youth (5-11); Pre-teen/teen (12-17); Young adult (18-24); Adult (25-49); Seniors (50+); All

Ethnic Groups Served: African American; Asian American; Caucasian; Latino/Hispanic; Other

Population(s) Served: All; Low- to Moderate-Income Community Members; Women/Girls; Low- to Moderate-Income Community Members

Awards & Recognition



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Budget (FY2014)

  • $3 million or higher
  • The current budget for DC Volunteer Lawyers Project is: $1 million to $3 million
  • $500k to $1 million
  • Less than $500k

Catalogue charities range in size from $100,000 to $3 million. This graphic indicates the budget range of the organization featured here. If you see an organizational budget above the $3 million mark, that is because the featured charity has grown in size since it first appeared in the Catalogue. We proudly present on our website the work of these "growth" charities.

About the Catalogue for Philanthropy

Each year 120 expert reviewers evaluate applicants for distinction, merit, and impact. Each featured charity has been successfully site visited and its financials given the thumbs up. The Catalogue for Philanthropy charges no fees and raises funds separately to support its work. Since 2003, it has raised over $40 million for charities across the Greater Washington region.

The Catalogue for Philanthropy looks to friends like you to keep our services independent and entirely free of charge. Consider a small contribution to the Catalogue to cap off your gift and help the causes you care about get the full support they deserve!

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