We are fully committed to providing pro bono assistance where we can to those who cannot afford legal advice, guidance or representation.
In fact, we became an alternative business structure in order to be able to bring our pro bono schemes in house.
Of course, not all our work is pro bono – we’re not a charity – but we do provide substantial amounts of it (1300 hours in 2015 alone), and continue to do so since we first established the Duty Advice Scheme in 2011 and the Family Advice Scheme in 2013, and the second branch of FAS in 2014.
Our innovation and sustainability has been recognised in two Law Society Excellence Awards nominations, short-listings and being Highly Commended for Pro Bono (2012, 2014) and we are rightly proud of our achievements. But more importantly, we’re proud to be able to assist those who need legal advice and representation but cannot afford it and are no longer entitled to legal aid.
In addition to helping clients, our pro bono activities also provide law students with the ability to gain valuable legal experience. We have a unique method of recruiting and training our advisers (who are all aiming to be qualified lawyers), and with direct and indirect supervision, and on the job training, we are able to produce advisers within 6-9 months that are able to give advice, guidance and represent clients in court. The experience is second to none for those willing to put the time in volunteering. And most importantly of all, it gives those with a social conscience the opportunity to give something back to the community.