Pro Bono Week
Pro Bono Week promotes and supports the work of lawyers who volunteer their services for free to people and organisations who couldn't otherwise afford legal advice. It's part of a global celebration of pro bono that takes place every year.
Pro Bono Week was first held in 2001. It’s endorsed by the Law Society, the Bar Council and the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx), who assist the pro bono sector by:
- publishing a guide to pro bono support (PDF 8 MB)
- raising awareness of initiatives and areas of concern
- organising events and giving support during Pro Bono Week
Pro Bono Week – 20th anniversary
In its 20th anniversary year, Pro Bono Week will take place from 1 to 5 November 2021.
It’s easy to get involved.
- Check the calendar to find out what’s planned
- Find out about volunteering opportunities
- Join the Great Legal Bake and help celebrate with a birthday cake and 20 candles, by fundraising for your local advice clinic
The 20th anniversary is a pivotal moment to look ahead to the next 20 years of pro bono while highlighting key moments and cases from the past two decades. This look to the future coincides with the focus on climate change taking place in November with the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow.
Firms are encouraged to start planning how to use Pro Bono Week 2021 to celebrate and promote pro bono, whether through private or public events, or through internal or wider communications.
Celebrating your pro bono work
The week offers a unique opportunity to celebrate the deep and longstanding commitment of the legal profession across the UK in giving free legal help to those in need.
If you’re already doing pro bono, you can:
- submit your standout cases to be featured as one of 20 pro bono stories
- use the “I Do Pro Bono” poster to share why you do pro bono on social media
- share stories of people or organisations your lawyers/members have helped, via your website or social media
- conduct a survey on pro bono work and publish the results during Pro Bono Week
- launch a new initiative
- host an event
Hosting an event
Planning an event during Pro Bono Week is a great way to launch a new initiative or spotlight your programme, partners and the impact of your lawyers’ pro bono work.
Consider hosting a pro bono fair or lunchtime drop-in, encouraging new volunteers to sign up for pro bono projects.
New to pro bono work?
Pro bono is vital to making sure that everyone has access to justice, but it's also a key tool in professional development and wellbeing for lawyers, as well as playing a role in staff recruitment and retention.
If your organisation is not yet engaged with pro bono, Pro Bono Week is the perfect time to announce your pro bono programme.
- Partner up: contact your local advice centre or university clinics to see if you can supply volunteer lawyers to their sessions
- Survey your employees to find out what pro bono work they're doing, publish the results between 1 and 5 November 2021 and use this to launch a programme
- Join the Pro Bono Connect scheme, bringing firms and chambers together to work on pro bono cases
- Firms: consider signing our Pro Bono Charter, showing your organisation’s commitment to improving access to justice
Find out more
Resources and updates are available on the Pro Bono Week website, where you can also find plenty of event ideas and tips.
Looking for legal advice
The Law Society does not provide legal advice. If you're looking for help getting pro bono support, our page for the public lists some organisations that can help.