Pro Bono Unit
Birmingham City University's Pro Bono Unit, set up in 2015, gives School of Law students the opportunity to work on real life law cases, gaining valuable hands on experience and employability skills.
Membership is open to any student currently studying a course within the School of Law, and the Unit will be recruiting new members to their management, administration, international and domestic teams in September 2016.
Working with the Unit will allow you to put the theoretical knowledge you have gained through your studies into practice. Experienced senior lecturers, and associated external solicitors, will help oversee all the work you do looking into legal cases from both the UK and abroad.
Recently completing its first year, over the past twelve months 25 students have helped out on various projects within the Unit's two teams – domestic and international.
The domestic team includes projects assisting the Citizens Advice Bureau and Bradical employment law charity in the community, helping clients on hotlines and through face to face interviews.
The Pro Bono Unit's international team undertakes work looking into real life international cases around the world for prisoners that have been unfairly detained abroad. The Pro Bono Unit itself was launched at an event discussing issues surrounding human rights and the death penalty in Indonesia.
The unit celebrated its one year milestone by winning two awards, one at the annual Dean's Awards, and the other at the Extra Mile awards, both for the team's performance throughout the academic year.
On top of this, the Pro Bono Unit has been involved in local community charity events, and raised over £600 for local law centres by participating in the Birmingham Legal Walk in June 2016.
The Unit was set up in 2015 by Sue Rivers, the head of the School of Law, with the assistance from senior lecturers Hannah Gorman and Christopher King. School of Law professor Ben Thorne was appointed Co-ordinator in February, and works closely with a student committee chaired by Daniel Bolitho.
The Pro Bono Unit has exciting projects on the horizon, including setting up its own legal clinic with supervising solicitors where assistance can be given to members of the public who have legal queries. The PBU are also looking to begin a project to help litigants in person at the Walsall County Court.
If you are interested in joining the School of Law's Pro Bono Unit, contact the Unit's co-ordinator Benjamin Thorne. New members will be recruited once the new academic year starts in September.