Legal capability project

Law for Life has secured funding from the Baring Foundation to run a small-scale pilot project with advice agencies to test new approaches to public legal education. The project aims to equip people to deal effectively with law-related issues.
Law for Life will work with one or more advice agencies to run a series of PLE sessions with their local communities. The aim will be to:
  • improve the levels of legal capability of the participants
  • improve advice agencies’ ability to deliver public education programmes
  • test our model of legal capability, and
  • implement and test a public legal education evaluation framework.
This initial project will conclude at the end of the year when a prototype resource pack will be produced to capture the lesson plans, tools and methods that worked well in the sessions.

An independent evaluation will take place to look at how effective the project was in building legal capability. It will also begin to develop better ways of capturing the impact of public legal education on social and economic wellbeing.

A small grant is available for participating agencies. The deadline for applications is 6th July 2012.

Further information and an application form are available on our website at:

We are grateful to the Baring Foundation for making this project possible.


Pro Bono advice and advice services – evaluation report

An evaluation of our pro bono advice and legal services project was published last month. The project took place between May 2010 and April 2011 and was a collaboration between Plenet (now Law for Life), the College of Law, LawWorks, and the Law Centres Federation. 
The project aimed to explore the opportunities for legal professionals to deliver PLE and to learn about their potential for empowering people through improved legal capability. In particular the project sought to examine how the use of non-casework assistance provided by lawyers and law students might be harnessed to expand good quality PLE delivery to the public.
The evaluation provided valuable insights into partnership working in the delivery of public legal education.  Solicitors in private firms and law students were successful in delivering PLE and were well able to respond to the needs of their audience. It also revealed the organisational challenges involved in running sessions and importance of planning to meet the particular needs of participants.
Read the evaluation report.

15 June 2012

Grundtvig London meeting

In April, Law for Life hosted a one day seminar on legal capability for 30 delegates from ten European countries.  This was the second of a series of meetings organised by the EU Grundtvig funded Legal Learning Partnership. 

Martin Jones from Law for Life presented a conceptual framework for legal capability detailing what we might expect a legally capable person to know and be able to do. Clare Shirtcliff from ASA's Advicenow project gave an overview of best practices in public legal education drawing on the experience of the EU Progress project led by Advicenow. John Seargeant from Law for Life led a discussion on evaluation techniques.

More details and seminar papers are available at: Grundtvig London meeting

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London N1 6DR

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