in south africa

Development, Democracy, and Equality

A Model for Human Rights Organizations throughout the World

The Legal Resources Centre is South Africa's largest public interest law firm, providing free legal services to the poor, vulnerable, and historically disadvantaged.  Founded in 1979 to challenge the most oppressive aspects of apartheid through the courts, the LRC is a legacy institution. Today, the LRC employs 40 staff members with offices in Cape Town, Durban, Grahamstown, and Johannesburg.

With its specialized Constitutional Litigation Unit, the LRC is the only non-governmental organization that focuses on constitutional law in South Africa - with a national capacity to litigate, to undertake law reform, and to inform debate across the spectrum of economic and social rights enshrined in South Africa’s democratic constitution.

Much of the LRC’s work concerns government accountability, corruption, and transparency. The LRC uses a range of creative legal strategies, including impact litigation, law reform, participation in partnerships and development processes, education, and networking within South Africa, throughout the African continent, and at the international level.

The LRC's work is animated by three overarching objectives: development, democracy and equality.  As such, its work is broadly organized around these seven focus areas:

1. access to justice and support of non-profit organizations

2. education and children's rights

3. equality and non-discrimination

4. housing, evictions, and urban planning

5. land, environment, and natural resources

6. openness and accountability

7. refugees and migration