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Your generosity makes the LRC’s work possible. Whether you contribute financially or as an advocate, you can make a real and lasting difference in people’s lives.


The South African Constitution, often noted as one of the most progressive in the world provides a firm foundation for all who live in the country to realize their basic human rights and dignity. Despite the promise of progressive rights, more work is needed to ensure that freedom and democracy deliver not only the right to vote, but also opportunities for economic and social advancement.

For the last three decades the LRC has been the most important public interest litigation organization in South Africa … the LRC has championed and defended the poor, marginalized and vulnerable in pursuit of life, dignity and equality of all.

The LRC aspires towards a fully democratic, equal society. Their goals are to promote justice using the Constitution, build respect for the rule of law, and contribute to socio-economic transformation within South Africa and beyond.

You can help the LRC fight injustice

Friends of the Legal Resources Centre of South Africa

About Us

The FOLRC was launched in 1979 with the financial support of the Carnegie Corporation, the Ford Foundation and the Rockefeller Brothers’ Fund along with prominent American attorneys, Lloyd Cutler (former White House Counsel),  Erwin Griswold (former Solicitor General of the United States), Louis Loss (Securities Law Scholar), Bernard Segal (Civil Rights lawyer), and Reuben Clark, Jr. (Civil Rights lawyer).  

The organization was formed to support what has become the Legal Resources Center of South Africa, an independent public interest law firm whose primary focus was attacking apartheid. It was hoped that this US non-profit would offer a level of protection and support to the LRC lawyers and staff during those dangerous days as they challenged the most oppressive aspects of apartheid – including the pass laws, forced removals and detentions.  

The LRC was instrumental in dismantling apartheid and over the last four decades, has been the most important and influential public interest litigation organization in South Africa advocating for the rights of the poor and marginalized. These efforts have been continuously supported by the FoLRC both financially and through joint initiatives to promote and publicize the work of the LRC.

Subject to the provisions of its Articles of Incorporation, Friends of the Legal Resources Centre oversees a portfolio held in the United States for the ultimate benefit of the Legal Resources Centre of South Africa (the “LRC”). The LRC played a major role in the courts in the struggle against apartheid. Currently the LRC’s principal focus is on securing rights to land and to education as specified in the Constitution of South Africa.

Legal Resources Centre of South Africa

LRC Programs


Quality education is necessary if all children are to enjoy the rights they are entitled to in the Constitution. Yet, education is faced with serious challenges, especially in rural areas and provinces such as the Eastern Cape, where much of the LRC’s work is carried out.

The LRC represents learners, parents, communities, teachers, schools, and NGOs, many in rural and impoverished communities, in compelling the state to honor its obligations in terms of the Constitution and the right to basic education.


The right to an environment that is not detrimental to health and well-being is recognized in the South African Constitution. Yet, communities are often unable to assert this right when business and the public sector are not held accountable for environmental contraventions.

The LRC’s work to promote environmental justice seeks to ensure that vulnerable and disadvantaged communities share equally in the benefits of development and are not burdened unfairly with the negative consequences and impacts on the environment arising from development.