Friends of the Public Private Partnership for Justice Reform in Afghanistan

The Friends of the Public Private Partnership for Justice Reform in Afghanistan (Friends of the PPP) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit formed in 2009 to administer the programs of the Public Private Partnership for Justice Reform in Afghanistan (the PPP).
Establishing rule of law in Afghanistan is the linchpin on which all other hopes for the region depend. The PPP was founded by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in 2007, and continues under Secretary Hillary Clinton, to provide support for the nascent Afghan legal community as it develops the institutional capacity to support peace, human rights and democracy.

Established by the US Department of State and leading private attorneys in the US, the PPP offers scholarships, trainings, and other educational resources to Afghan prosecutors, judges, defense lawyers, advocates and educators seeking to strengthen their skills in the field of law. The PPP seeks to promote rule of law in Afghanistan by supporting Afghan lawyers in their efforts to build strong, fair and open democratic institutions.

One of the key programs of the PPP is the Afghan LLM Scholarship Program.  Currently, no graduate-level legal education exists in Afghanistan, so in order to obtain the higher level of legal training necessary to teach or to understand international law, human rights law or areas such as intellectual property rights and commercial law, Afghan lawyers and judges must study abroad.  Few are in a financial position to do so.

The Afghan LLM Scholarship Program combines grants for tuition and fees from partnering US law schools with PPP funding for the Scholars’ travel and living expenses in the US.  The PPP helps match Scholars to top US law schools, including Boston University, Harvard, University of Utah, Chapman, Stanford, George Washington University, Washington and Lee, Ohio Northern University, Georgetown and Whittier.  In addition, a legal mentor is available to most PPP Afghan LLM Scholars, usually a senior Federal judge.

The Executive Committee of the PPP, the Board of the Friends of the PPP, and PPP volunteers include five federal judges, two former ambassadors and a UN representative, a former lieutenant governor, noted academics and senior partners at top US law firms, all of whom personally mentor the PPP’s Afghan LLM Scholars.

The primary goal of the PPP LLM Scholarship Program is to encourage young legal leaders to return home to apply their new skills and each scholarship recipient commits to returning to Afghanistan upon completion of their studies.  Many of the PPP Scholarship Program alumni are already successfully using their LLM training to create a stronger legal system in Afghanistan.