December 5, 2017

          PBSC’s Family Law Project (FLP) is celebrating 20 years! We’ve been hard at work for two decades – assisting unrepresented litigants, filling out court forms, improving access to justice as well as training future lawyers and strengthening the family bar. We are now looking ahead to our next 20 years and we need your support! We’ve launch the Campaign for Family Justice – Phase Two and your donation can make a real difference.


          In 2013, PBSC found itself in a dire situation and needed to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars to avoid the scaling back and eventual closure of the Family Law Project. Enter Philip M. Epstein QC, who stepped up to chair the Campaign for Family Justice. With Epstein Cole LLP as our lead donor, Phil was able to mobilize the family bar, raising $630,000 to keep the Family Law Project going for another three years.


          To those of you who contributed to our fundraising efforts we extend a sincere and heartfelt thank you. Your generous donations not only helped save PBSC’s Family Law Project, they allowed the program to thrive and grow. With your support, we are starting the 2017/18 school year with Family Law Project initiatives in 12 cities across the country. By the end of the 2017/18 school year, over 170 PBSC students will have served over 1,600 low-income clients and provided 12,400 hours of pro bono assistance and legal information to unrepresented litigants.


          This year, unfortunately, we find ourselves again facing a serious funding shortage. We need your support to maintain, strengthen and expand our Family Law Project.


            The quality and impact of our services is evident. Judges, duty counsel and court staff regularly report that our program improves the flow of court proceedings and positively impacts the administration of justice. Law students leave the program equipped with empathy for access barriers, substantive and procedural knowledge, and motivation to run a family law practice. The feedback we receive from clients is equally encouraging. Clients regularly comment that students provide an invaluable service and do so with professionalism and skill. One client reported:


          “I was so lost on what I needed to do and the student was able to answer all of my questions. I left confident.”


          Another client recently commented:


          “As a low income person I really appreciated this service. It was incredibly helpful both in educating me and making it possible to move forward in my divorce.”


          PBSC is proud to train and empower students to provide such high calibre services to families in crisis. It’s true that we’ve come a long way in 20 years, but with your support we can go even further! We invite you to make your tax-deductible contribution through our website.


Thank you for your support!



Ontario FLP Coordinator Sylvia Basso coordinates PBSC services in eight Ontario courthouses

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