Today, the Legal Empowerment Fund (LEF)—a 10-year, multimillion-dollar effort at the Fund for Global Human Rights to give frontline activists and grassroots groups the support they need to close the global justice gap—launched its inaugural open call for proposals. The LEF will consider grant applications from grassroots groups doing legal empowerment work for up to 24 months of general support (core funding).
In its first funding cycle, the LEF will identify and support grassroots legal empowerment groups that have had difficulty accessing traditional opportunities for funding. In order to be accessible and reach these organizations and activists—especially in the Global South—the LEF will accept written or video/audio applications in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Arabic.
What is legal empowerment?
Legal empowerment combines law with organizing to build power among people affected by injustice. When people are able to know, use, and shape the law, they can access justice. With the law on their side, people are able seek peaceful solutions, protect the lands and resources they depend on, and hold their governments and other perpetrators of justice to account.
What is the LEF?
The LEF is a new initiative to provide urgently needed, long-term support to grassroots justice defenders and organizations that are fighting to help people understand and claim their rights while shaping the laws that govern them.
Over ten years, the LEF aims to raise $100 million to strengthen the people-centered justice movement. The LEF will support visionary grassroots justice groups with renewable and long-term core funding, offering space for experimentation and access to a global network of donors, advocates, and allies.
The LEF has been made possible through the generous support of funders and allies, including:
- The Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, a private philanthropy committed to supporting efforts around the world that promote a just, equitable and sustainable society.
- The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, a nonpartisan, private charitable foundation that advances ideas and supports institutions to promote a better world.
- Namati,which advances social and environmental justice by building a movement of people who know, use, and shape the law. Namati also convenes the Legal Empowerment Network, with over 2,500 groups and 10,000 individuals from every part of the world
- Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies, a group of 39 UN member states, international organizations, global partnerships, civil society organizations, and the private sector working to accelerate action to implement the SDG targets for peace, justice, and inclusion (SDG16+).
For more information on the LEF’s first round of funding or to get involved in the fight for global justice, visit globalhumanrights.org/legal-empowerment.