Georgetown students are encouraged to perform pro bono work with whatever organizations best suit their interests. However, a number of D.C. area organizations are especially well known for taking the time to train and encourage Georgetown Law students, who in turn contribute significantly to their work. Many students find that after building a strong relationship with a particular organization they are inclined to continue volunteering there throughout their time at Georgetown Law.
The organizations listed below provide Georgetown Law students with both pro bono and community service opportunities. Both types of volunteerism are encouraged by Georgetown, but they are credited slightly differently for the purposes of the Pro Bono Pledge. (See the Pro Bono Pledge Requirements.)
Pro Bono Organizations
CAIR Coalition brings together community groups, pro bono attorneys, volunteers and immigrants from D.C., Virginia and Maryland with the goal of ensuring that all immigrants are treated with fairness, dignity and respect for their human and civil rights.
Catholic Charities provides first-rate access to legal services for low-income individuals in the District of Columbia and Maryland in the following areas: family law, employment rights, landlord/tenant and related housing matters, public entitlements, consumer/bankruptcy, wills &probate, guardianship and conservatorship matters.
The D.C. Earned Income Tax Credit (DC EITC) Campaign leverages the skills of hundreds of community volunteers to provide financial education and free tax preparation services to thousands of low-income individuals and families throughout the D.C. metropolitan area. Training for the EITC program takes place every January at Georgetown Law. Volunteers can be trained as tax preparers, savings promoters, greeters, client coordinators, interpreters, or food stamp specialists. Volunteers are usually assigned to a single tax site where they volunteer weekly over the course of tax season (January-April).
Founded on Labor Day 2000, the mission of the DC Employment Justice Center is to secure, protect and promote workplace justice in the DC metropolitan area. Since its founding, the EJC has successfully used a combination of strategies to protect the rights of low-income workers, including legal services, policy advocacy, community organizing, and education. In the past eleven years, the EJC has returned more than $7,000,000 to the pockets of low-wage workers, achieved many legislative victories that have touched the lives of countless workers, educated thousands of workers about their rights and responsibilities on the job, and launched several vibrant community organizing groups.
The Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless' mission is to use the law to make justice a reality for our neighbors who struggle with homelessness and poverty. Combining community lawyering and advocacy to achieve our clients' goals, our expert staff and network of volunteer attorneys provide low barrier, comprehensive legal services at intake sites throughout the District of Columbia, helping our clients to access housing, shelter, and life-saving services.
Community Service Organizations
Bread for the City offers five program services to low-income DC residents: food and clothing distribution, primary medical care, legal advice and representation, and comprehensive social services. All services are free of cost to eligible DC residents, and are provided under one roof in an atmosphere of dignity and respect.
So Others Might Eat has served Washington, DC for over 40 years. They provide a range of services to homeless individuals, including the provision of food and clothing, medical and dental services, mental health services, and job training. Over the years, SOME has helped thousands of people get off the streets, transform their lives, and live independently.
Habitat for Humanity of Washington, DC believes that all our neighbors deserve safe, comfortable homes they can afford – and there’s no better way to build our communities than to all lend a hand. Because when we all donate what we can – whether it be time or talent or money – we can build more decent, affordable homes for those in need.
The mission of the Capital Area Food Bank is to feed those who suffer from hunger in the DC metro area by acquiring food and distributing it through a network of partner agencies; and educating, empowering and enlightening the community about the issues of hunger and nutrition. CAFB is a member of Feeding America, a national network of 200 food banks.
Located in Anacostia, Thurgood Marshall Academy is open to all DC students. The school serves nearly 400 students, over 90% of whom live in Wards 7 and 8 -- communities with the highest poverty levels and fewest resources in the district. Almost 100% of students are African-American and over 75% qualify for free or reduced lunch. Thurgood Marshall Academy emphasizes elements of law and justice throughout its curriculum. The academy's goal is not that every student becomes a lawyer, but rather that every student develops their own voice and learns valuable legal skills such as problem solving, critical thinking, and oral advocacy. These skills will serve them well in high school, in college, and throughout their professional careers.
Food & Friends provides meals, groceries and nutrition counseling to people living with life-challenging illnesses such as HIV/AIDS and cancer. Determination of eligibility is entirely health-based. Food & Friends has no minimum income or insurance coverage requirements. To be eligible for service, a person must have a qualifying primary illness, compromised nutritional status and a limited ability to prepare his or her own meals due to factors such as disability, illness, or medical treatment.
D.C. Central Kitchen uses food as a tool to strengthen the community. Through job training, healthy food distribution and local small business partnerships, D.C. Central Kitchen offers path-breaking solutions to poverty, hunger and poor health.