Our Work

We envision a society with accessible legal systems, where the dignity and rights of every person are upheld. Our mission is to provide free legal support to people and communities facing barriers to justice.

People walking downstairs in a building.

Across Canada, around 1,500 PBSC volunteers provide approximately 120,000 hours of free legal support to nearly 400 organizations across the country.

Each year, the University of Toronto PBSC Chapter places volunteer law students with public interest organizations, legal clinics, tribunals, courts and lawyers taking on pro bono projects. Students perform a variety of law-related tasks such as performing client intake, completing legal research,  and providing legal information to organizations and individuals.


PBSC was established in 1996 at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. At the time, it was the first and only pro bono organization in Canada. The visionary support of two key players—founding Dean Ronald Daniels and the Law Foundation of Ontario—were instrumental in launching the organization. Through the creation of PBSC, Dean Daniels aimed to combine education and public interest volunteer work, with the goal of ensuring that each new generation of lawyers would enter the profession committed to pro bono philosophy and practice.

Our Approach

Collaborative. We engage approximately 1,500 law students annually to provide free legal information and services in partnership with community organizations and supervising lawyers and notaries.

Visionary. We cultivate future leaders, advocates and allies through training and experiential learning opportunities. PBSC has student-led Chapters at 22 law schools in Canada.

Responsive. Our Chapters respond to local needs in their communities across all areas of law. At PBSC National, we develop programs that address complex and systemic inequities.

Organizational Structure

The PBSC National Office is housed at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. Each chapter is managed by one or more Program Coordinators who develop chapter projects, maintain and cultivate relationships with community organizations and lawyers, promote their PBSC chapters, organize and host events, and recruit, train and monitor law student volunteers. The Program Coordinators are law students. Each law faculty is responsible for the operation of its own PBSC chapter, including the chapter's finances, programs and projects, and employees.

"Law students through PBSC have made immeasurable contributions to our work supporting women impacted by violence in the Downtown Eastside, Vancouver." -- Atria Women's Resource Society