CILEx Volunteers Sought For One Day Advice Clinic

CILEx Pro Bono Trust is holding a pilot legal advice clinic in the London area. Still in early planning, the clinic will be a one day only event held in the autumn with a focus on family law. If you are a family practitioner and interested in participating, please send your full name, contact details and your CILEx membership number to Valerie Robertson at


Volunteering Opportunities

Unashamedly lifting them straight from the latest LawWorks newsletter, here are some up to date opportunities to offer your services to a good cause.

Note that one of them specifically mentions CILEx Lawyers which is a chance to say something about this. Although I frequently whine about CILEx Lawyers not being mentioned, it is worth bearing in mind that e.g. LawWorks is the Solicitors’ pro bono charity so their work and material is obviously going to be directed to, er, Solicitors. In other words I shouldn’t whine at all …

Equally, save in exceptionally rare cases, if a Law Centre or other group is looking for a legal advisor, they won’t mind whether it is a Solicitor, a Barrister or a CILEx Lawyer. What they want are the skills and experience which can be applied for the benefit of their service users.

So, whether CILEx Lawyers are mentioned or not, if the work sounds interesting and is up your street, then get in touch anyway. Whatever help you can offer is desperately needed and will undoubtedly be greatly appreciated.

Oh, and if you hear me whining, tell me to shut up.

Westminster Citizen’s Advice Bureau are looking for Trainees, Pupils, Solicitors, Barristers and Chartered Legal Executives with experience in Immigration, Employment or Housing to volunteer whenever they are available. Please see the job description for more information.

Sheffield Law Centre is hoping to recruit Volunteer Management Committee Members who can commit to 1 year’s service and who have experience of running an organisation, managing people, or providing a service to the public. For more information, please see the job posting.

Disability Action Advice is looking for volunteer advisors for its centre in Barnet. Duties include giving advice on Housing and Employment Law matters, and preparing applications. Please see here for more information.

You can see more information on these and other roles in the jobs and volunteering opportunities section of the LawWorks website here.


Volunteering Opportunities

With thanks to LawWorks for compiling this list, if you want to do some pro bono work then the following may offer a good opportunity. And they aren’t all in London …

Liverpool Law Clinic are looking for specialist experienced lawyers to check legal content of advice letters drafted by students

Brent Community Law Centre are looking for telephone advisors or volunteer telephone advice line supervisors

The University of East London are looking for volunteer lawyers to take part in the pilot of their new legal advice clinic, supervising student work.

Dunstable CABare looking for lawyers with family, employment, housing, benefits or consumer law experience to provide initial advice to clients

Westminster CAB are looking for professionals experienced in immigration, employment or housing

Disability Action in Barnet are looking for advisers and advocates prepared to work with people with disabilities

There are some very exciting opportunities through Reach Volunteering where you can help a range of charities who would benefit from legal experience through non-executive positions

Sheffield Law Centre are looking for volunteer management committee members to help manage the organisation

South West London Law Centres are always on the lookout and do a range of work. Contact Alasdair Stewart for more information



Volunteering Opportunities

Sometimes it can be difficult to find suitable pro bono opportunities. Obviously, if you are a CILEx Member then we’d encourage you to join the JIB Scheme but this is not regular work and you may prefer to help out at a clinic or elsewhere as part of a rota.

The latest LawWorks Newsletter helpfully lists several existing opportunities as well as linking to more on their website. Although they introduce the list as being suitable for solicitors and trainees apparently forgetting about CILEx Lawyers and Members, as it is so helpful, we’ll forgive them. This time…

Volunteers are required for the following clinics:

  1. A new clinic, working with a local night shelter in East London requires a law firm or volunteers to provide advice to individuals on employment, housing and welfare benefits law.
  2. A new clinic in East London is looking for a law firm or volunteers to assist in providing business law advice to small social enterprises.
  3. Volunteers are required at Westminster CAB. See here for more details
  4. Volunteers are required to assist students at University of East London. See here  for more details
  5. Volunteers are required to assist students at Kingston University. See here for more details
  6. Volunteers are required to assist students at University of Liverpool, in person or on a remote basis.  See here  for more
  7. BPP London requires a housing law supervisor to supervise students at their Holborn branch. See here for more details.

Additional volunteering opportunities can be found here. Remember – LawWorks provides training in most areas of law that clinics provide advice on.

AWikipedia: A (named a plural aes) is the first letter and vowel in the ISO basic Latin alphabet.

Working Together, Making a Difference

Picture of 50th celebration balloon

Happy 50th Birthday CILEx

Following the success of the JIB Scheme over the last couple of years, the Trust is now working to improve and expand the service. This has involved

  • producing additional guidance material and standard documents for the volunteers
  • working with the BPBU to simplify the process of finding and appointing a volunteer
  • setting up reporting procedures to measure the value and impact of the Scheme
  • launching a campaign to increase the number of volunteers

The last of these has involved visits to numerous branches of CILEx to talk about the Scheme and disseminate our new JIB Leaflet. Those visits will complement the imminent distribution of infocards; a cross between a CILEx Birthday Card and brief information to the Scheme.

Merging those birthday celebrations with the recruitment process, we are offering a prize of £50 worth of vouchers to the 50th new volunteer* to sign up to the Scheme. We thought our dedicated blog followers deserved first warning of this so here it is and, er, get your skates on!

Picture of postcard with information

Look out for your infocard

*We’re lawyers so of course there is some small print:
The vouchers are only available to CILEx Members joining the JIB Scheme for the first time before 31 May 2013. The Trustees’ decision as to the order in which new volunteers are registered is final.

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