The Law Foundation of Ontario
The Law Foundation of Ontario supports the Faculty of Law’s efforts to enhance diversity in the legal profession and serve the legal needs of the community.
Since its inception in 1974, The Law Foundation of Ontario has disbursed over $1 billion to fulfill its mission – investing in knowledge and services that help people understand the law and use it to improve their lives. Three-quarters of the Foundation’s funding goes to Legal Aid Ontario while the remainder goes to grants to non-profits to advance access to justice. Through its granting, The Law Foundation of Ontario has supported excellence in legal education initiatives at U of T.
Over the years, the Foundation has contributed more than $13.5 million in funding to the Faculty of Law. One prominent example is the Foundation’s support for the Cecil A. Wright Chair, which honours the founding dean of U of T Law who helped modernize legal education and scholarship in Canada. The Foundation, along with a group of U of T alumni and friends, helped endow the chair in 1997.
The Foundation also provided seed funding for the faculty’s Centre for the Legal Profession, which advances accountability, ethics, and public service throughout the field. In addition, the Foundation funded accessibility renovations for the law school.
Currently Foundation granting supports the Faculty of Law’s efforts to enhance diversity in the legal profession and serve the legal needs of the community.
The Foundation’s grants support the Faculty of Law’s Indigenous Initiatives Office which focuses on the recruitment and retention of Indigenous law students and the delivery of innovative courses in Indigenous Law, the student legal aid clinic which provides services to the public, and student internships at non-profits and Indigenous organizations providing legal education and assistance to local communities.
In addition, to the Law Foundation of Ontario’s $13.5 million in grants to the Faculty of Law, the Foundation also has provided over $8.5 million to Pro Bono Students Canada, housed at the Faculty of Law, to provide practical learning experience for law students and promote the value of pro bono service among the next generation of lawyers. It also has provided $800,000 to the LAWS program, housed at the Faculty of Law, which is an education program aimed at supporting, guiding, and motivating high-school students through law-themed programming.