The Access to Justice Foundation (ATJF) has launched a new campaign to raise money for free legal advice centres across the UK.
The ATJF's new campaign is called 'Go the Extra Mile for Justice' and is designed to replace the 2020 legal walks, which have been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The annual legal walks usually see legal professionals, friends and colleagues take part in walks of between five and ten kilometres across England and Wales to raise vital funds.
This fundraising campaign asks participants to sign up to the challenge, suitable for all ages and fitness levels, and tasks them to travel a number of miles in any form – running, skipping, cycling, or hopping.
Participants should ask friends and family to sponsor a mile each. The AJTF suggests a donation of £10 per mile. Each participant can specify whether they want the funds they have raised to go directly to their local legal advice centres.
The foundation is aiming for a combined 20,000 miles to be completed by the end of the year, hoping that people will continue to support access to justice at this time.
This challenge gives people the chance to raise funds in their own time and at their own pace for legal advice centres that offer free legal advice to disadvantaged people across the UK.
The money raised will go to the Legal Support Trusts throughout England, Scotland and Wales, where it will then be distributed to free legal advice centres in local areas. The legal advice centres help thousands of people with issues related to housing, employment, benefits, debt and immigration.
There have been significant cuts to legal advice centres in recent years, which has negatively impacted a number of disadvantaged people across the UK. This situation has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, and therefore the money raised by the AJTF's campaign will cover this funding gap.
Laura Cassidy, Development and Fundraising Manager at the AJTF, said, "We know that so many people in the legal profession are passionate about access to justice, so we’re hoping that as many people as possible will join in the challenge and help us raise the vital funds that we would have made during the walks."