Stronger Sector

Stronger Sector

Training and support for a thriving social justice legal sector

Working in the UK social justice legal sector has always brought challenges, but the last 10 years have seen increased stress and uncertainty, along with falling earnings and reduced career progression. The number of practitioners has collapsed, at the same time as demand for advice is rising. Organisations are responsible for supporting their own staff, but some issues can only be fully addressed at a systemic level – and it is these initiatives we will fund through our ‘Stronger sector’ grants programme, with a focus on organisations specialising in social welfare and public law.

We want to support the creation of multiple pathways to rewarding and lifelong careers in social justice law. People should be able to train at different levels through different routes, to work flexibly when they need to, to share learning with their peers, to progress to become trainers and supervisors, and to manage organisations effectively.

Under this programme, we can fund a range of activities which would support this goal including:

  1. Development and delivery of legal education and training programmes to address systemic gaps in knowledge and practice among advice workers, paralegals, lawyers and managers.
  2. Sharing learning and knowledge between practitioners and organisations to improve practice and to increase access to justice.
  3. Policy work to influence the local or national statutory and regulatory framework for legal education.
  4. Piloting and evaluating new approaches to delivering legal education, including, for example, flexible working, apprenticeships, remote supervision.

In delivering these activities, we welcome collaborations between organisations. We also recognise the role of second-tier organisations (which support other organisations instead of people directly) in developing co-ordinated, system-wide responses to addressing gaps.

We are interested in the outcomes you would like to achieve and a broad pathway to getting there, so the grants we make under this programme are flexible. We encourage organisations to include a reasonable overhead contribution.

If you would like to apply for a grant, please use the buttons below to read about how we prioritise applications, what we will not fund and the application process.

Under our work to support a Stronger Sector, we run two further programmes to which eligible organisations can also apply.

Justice First Fellowship

The Justice First Fellowship is training the next generation of social justice lawyers. You can apply to host a Justice First Fellow as well as apply under one of our other programmes. The scheme has separate deadlines and application form. Find out more here.

Coming Soon

To be launched in spring 2020 by TLEF and other funders, a new initiative will focus on immigration advice and access to justice. Prior to this, applications relating to immigration law should be made through our Stronger sector programme.

We are also involved in two partnerships that focus on developing new settings in which the role of the law is better understood and used as a tool to promote change and to prevent harm.

Health justice partnerships

We are working with Professor Dame Hazel Genn and her team at the UCL Centre for Access to Justice to integrate access to social welfare legal advice in to health systems and strategies.

The use of law by non-legal voluntary organisations

We are working with the Baring Foundation
to support work on how law and legal strategies can add to the tools civil society organisations use to tackle disadvantage and discrimination.

Find out more about our Fairer Systems funding programme.

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