The WLALA Foundation is a non-profit charitable corporation established by the Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles (“WLALA”) to increase the utility of the law as an instrument of social justice. The WLALA Foundation awards the Fran Kandel Public Interest Grant (formerly known as the WLALA Foundation Public Action Grant) to law students for projects that make governmental and social institutions and agencies more accessible and responsive to members of society whose interests are not otherwise adequately recognized or asserted. Since its incorporation in 1985, the WLALA Foundation has funded projects with a strong emphasis on public service. Through its activities, the Foundation seeks to achieve three specific goals:
● Provide help to the disadvantaged by funding projects that will directly benefit the under-represented in the greater Los Angeles area;
● Educate and expose law students to legal concerns affecting the disadvantaged in areas outside of traditional legal practices; and
● Encourage the legal community's involvement in public interest law by funding students who show the capability of and commitment to assisting those in need.
Recent representative grant projects have included:
● Preparation of an educational video and presentation for young women informing them of their rights to equal access to sports under Title IX;
● Preparation of a resource guide for parents and presentation regarding special education services available to children with cancer;
● Creation of a pamphlet and presentation to help families resolve student truancy citations and to provide resources regarding truancy-related issues;
● Preparation of a resource guide and presentation regarding California’s Right to Know End-of-Life Options Act and available, legal end-of-life options;
● Creation of a video to guide victims of domestic violence through the process of obtaining a restraining order pro se;
● Compilation of a resource guide for adult children caring for elderly parents in the Los Angeles area;
● Production and distribution of an easy to understand “roadmap” to assist self-represented litigants with their divorce and child custody cases in the Los Angeles Superior Court;
● Production of a “know your rights” handbook for employment discrimination issues faced by gay, lesbian and transgender individuals;
● Creation of an educational coloring book to teach children in the dependency court who lawyers are and why they have one;
● Creation of a flyer informing expecting parents about a 2003 California law permitting parents to surrender babies within three days of birth without any negative legal ramifications to the parents;
● Production of a manual informing parents of children with medically induced learning disabilities of their rights to special educational benefits under California law;
● Creation of a pamphlet entitled: “Straight Talk to Teens in Foster Care About Mental Health Options in Los Angeles County;”
● Development of a resource manual for child victims of sexual abuse;
● Preparation of materials informing AIDS-afflicted workers of their rights in the workplace;
● Production of materials to help homeless families receive Aid to Families with Dependent Children benefits to provide temporary shelter and permanent housing;
● Development of a concise Spanish-language booklet to educate Central American refugee women about their legal rights and available resources;
● Production of “know your rights” brochures in English, Spanish, and Chinese addressing the needs of, and community resources available to, immigrant and refugee battered women; and
● Production of a resource guide for domestic violence survivors.
The WLALA Foundation’s Fran Kandel Public Interest Grant program enables law students to devote time to public interest projects and exposes them to legal and social concerns of disadvantaged citizens that are not ordinarily experienced in traditional law practices. The Grant program is designed not to support a summer public interest job, as worthy as one is, but rather to fund a particular project with a tangible outcome.
All right, title, and interest in and to the final work product developed as a result of the WLALA Foundation’s Fran Kandel Public Interest Grant program will be held by WLALA, subject to limited rights of the law students who develop the work product.
Questions about the WLALA Foundation’s 2016 Fran Kandel Public Interest Grant should be directed to either of the Co-Chairs of WLALA's Grant Committee:
Ruth Pinkel Meehan Rasch
Tel.: (213) 894-6077 Tel.: (213) 830-7317
Applications must be received by 5:00 p.m., Thursday, March 10, 2016. To obtain a hard copy, please CLICK HERE.
Please return to:
Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles
634 S. Spring Street, Suite 617
Los Angeles, CA 90014
Note: Applications may be submitted by email or mail so long as received before the deadline of March 10, 2016. Grant applications that do not comply with the requirements detailed herein will not be included in the evaluation process. Lack of approval should not be considered a reflection on the project's merit.