“Celebrating Different Asian New Years and Celebrating Achievements”
Dear Friends and Supporters of Bridges Across Borders South East Asia Community Legal Education Initiative (BABSEA CLE),
Welcome to April and Happy Thai/Laos/Myanmar/Khmer/Bengali/Sri Lankan New Year and Water Festival to all.
As more than 3 ½ months of 2016 have now passed and April is here, we look at some of the beautiful countries we at BABSEACLE help to “bridge” and “cross” legal education/access to justice borders with. While we work throughout Asia, in this month we are thinking about Thailand, Laos, Myanmar and Cambodia. In doing so we see that this time of the year is a great occasion to enjoy another New Year and New Beginnings in these Southeast Asian countries.
I am a BABSEACLE team member from Vietnam and I love working in an organization that has so many team members from different Asian countries all working together with common goals and interest. Because of my personal love to travel and experience many things, and my wanting to know more about the festivals and cultures in other countries that our organization works in/with, I often surf the web and read more about them. In Vietnam, like China, Singapore, Korea and other many other Asian countries, our Lunar New Year often falls out in January or February. In many other Southeast Asian countries such as Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos, and Thailand, where some of our team members live and work, as well as Yunnan, China, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, they have the “Water Festival”. It is called the ‘Water Festival’ because people splash/pour water on one another as part of the cleansing ritual to welcome the New Year. Traditionally people gently sprinkled water on one another as a sign of respect, but as the New Year falls during the hottest month in South East Asia, many people end up dousing strangers and passersby in vehicles in boisterous celebration. The act of pouring water is also a show of blessings and good wishes. It is believed that on this Water Festival, everything old must be thrown away, or it will bring the owner bad luck.” The Water Festival is a like a type of re-birth and a way to begin again, and bring many good things into the New Year. It is also a time to celebrate good deeds and achievements done.
During this April 2016 we at BABSEACLE feel lucky and honored to be celebrating the past 3 ½ months of the 2016 calendar. We have much to celebrate about, including so many cross-border activities and experiences. This included our Annual Access to Justice (A2J) Weekend in Chiang Mai (Thailand) with a number of participants coming from different countries, you can see articles: “The seeds of Justice keep on growing: another inspiring Access to Justice Weekend”, “Measuring and reporting the impact of CLE Programmes to Strengthen Access to Justice (A2J) Workshop” and “University Students Took Part in Access to Justice (A2J) Event”.
As we greet the New Year we see another cross-border event coming up. The 10 day 2nd Asia CLE Summer School in Chiang Mai, Thailand will focus on programme and curriculum design for many different types of CLE programmes including in-house clinics, community teachings, externships and simulations. And if you would like to know more, please follow up this article: “2nd Asia CLE Summer School 9-18 June 2016″.
Heading to the second country, it’s Myanmar. In this time, Myanmar “blossomed the flowers” with many activities relating to Externship, CLE Mock Trial, Legal Training, etc. You can explore with“BABSEACLE/QUT Legal Studies Externship Clinic In Myanmar”,“Second Time Lucky – Myanmar Externship 2.0, “White & Case Supports Dagon University Legal Training Workshops”, “A journey in Law” “QUT students’ take on Mawlamyine”, “Taking A Leading Role in Myanmar CLE Mock Trial Event”, “DULSA; Myanmar’s First Law Students’ Group”, “2nd National Myanmar CLE Mock Trial Event” and “The 2nd Myanmar National Clinical Legal Education (CLE) Mock Trial Workshop”.
Laos is the 3rd country which we would like to introduce to you. You can enjoy with the article titled “Train CLE to the Village Leader in Luangnamtha and Oudomxay Province”, “Learning & Advocacy Project Evaluation Video”. We also have our new Bringing Access to Justice for Woman Gender Based Violence Programme which began in March. You should also read about all the wonderfulCLE/Legal Education Materials developed by our partner at the National University of Laos Faculty of Law and Political Science.
We have another event in Cambodia that we would like to tell you about but as this is happening in April, you will need to wait until the next quarterly newsletter.
Celebrations about New Years and life also bring the celebration of people whose lives made us richer. In this newsletter we celebrate the life of a Global Pro Bono leader Esther Lardent, , the founder of the Pro Bono Institute who passed away on April 5, 2016. In an article titled “Remembering and Celebrating Esther Lardent: Pro Bono Visionary, World Changer and Mentor” we express both our deep feelings of sadness and joyfulness as we honor the her life and journey.
We also greet the New Year and welcome new members to the BABSEACLE family, from the Myanmar office, Cho Mie Aung and an intern to Thailand office, Camilla Caron.
Equally important, please do not for upcoming 5th Asia Pro Bono Conference being held in Bali, Indonesia from August 31st to September 1st. This very relevant theme of the Conference this year is “The Impact of Pro Bono on Transformational Change”. This year’s Conference, and other side, access to justice, related events, is being held side by side with the PILnet 3rd Asia ProBono Forum (August 29-30). Collectively the Conference and Forum is being referred to as the Asia Pro Bono Exchange (August 29 – September 1). You can read more about the upcoming event at “The 5th Asia Pro Bono Conference to “explore”.
Finally, we would like to thank you so much for all our friends and supporters because it’s you who helped us get to this New Year and bring with us the “achievements” we have. We welcome you to journey with us into this New Year and be with us going forward.
Lan Anh Nguyen, BABSEACLE Newsletter Coordinator, on behalf of the BABSEACLE Team
Access to Justice Weekend
As a volunteer for Bridges Across Borders Southeast Asia Community Legal Education Initiative (BABSEACLE), I attended the 2nd Access to Justice (A2J) weekend that took place in Chiang Mai, Thailand, January 21 – 23, 2016. This was a combined event that was organized by BABSEACLE […]. These justice-awareness events brought together students, teachers, lawyers, legal trainers, non-government organizations, and individuals who wanted to improve their knowledge about access to justice and rule of law.
Workshop to Gauge Community Legal Education (CLE) and Access to Justice (A2J) Programmes
Aisyah is a lawyer, who is a CLE Project Officer, at the University of Malaya (Malaysia) Faculty of Law, co-coordinates their Community Outreach Programme, is in charge of establishing their legal aid and is currently pursuing her criminal justice masters degree, and Muhammad is a second year law student, at the Faculty of Law of the University of Malaya, and is actively involved in community outreach. BABSEACLE held the above workshop, January 21 and 22, 2016, at the Kantary Hills Hotel, in Chiang Mai, Thailand. It was attended by law lecturers, law students, lawyers and volunteers, from all over Asia, including 4 students and a CLE project officer from the University of Malaya.
The National Economic University (Hanoi) Student Experience at the BABSEACLE Access to Justice (A2J) Weekend
From the 21st to the 24th of January, one lecturer and seven students, of the National Economics University (NEU) Clinical Legal Education (CLE) programme in Hanoi, Vietnam participated in the Access to Justice (A2J) Weekend, which was organized by Bridges Across Borders Southeast Asia Community Legal Education Initiative (BABSEACLE), in Chiang Mai, Thailand. The series of events lasted 4 days, including a two-day training where we were divided into two groups, in order to have a full overview of CLE and acquire as much knowledge as possible. Several topics were discussed, and it was a great opportunity for us to learn more about CLE and Pro Bono activities.
CLE English Workshop BABSEACLE/QUT Legal Studies Externship Clinic In Myanmar
[…]A number of these workshop have been organized with the oldest university in Myanmar, Yangon University. However 2016 marked a milestone and during 27th-30th January 2016 an incredibly valuable CLE English workshop was delivered by Australian students from the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) with a target focus being primarily being us.
White & Case Supports Dagon University Legal Training Workshops
The international law firm of White & Case has been a core pro bono support partner of Bridges Across Borders South East Asia Community Legal Education Initative (“BABSEACLE”) for more than four years. During this period of time teams from White & Case have successfully conducted three legal training workshops in Vientiane, Laos, in 2015 as well as supported a BABSEACLE Junior Legal Fellow in Laos. Building on the existing relationship with BABSEACLE, this program has now been extended to working with BABSEACLE in Myanmar to help assist and collaborate on the nationally developing clinical legal education programme.
Second Time Lucky – Myanmar Externship 2.0
As part of the continuing partnership between the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) and Bridges Across Borders South East Asia Community Legal Education Initiative (BABSEACLE), 10 lucky QUT students were selected to travel to Myanmar for the second two-and-a-half week BABSEACLE Legal Studies Externship Clinic.
Taking A Leading Role in Myanmar CLE Mock Trial Event
BABSEACLE continues its dedication to developing university-based and community-based clinical legal education (CLE) programs throughout Asia with recent highly participated event, the second Myanmar National CLE Mock Trial Event.
The 2nd Myanmar National CLE Mock Trial Workshop
The 2nd Myanmar National CLE Mock Trial Workshop was co-organized by the East Yangon University (EYU) and Bridges Across Borders Southeast Asia Community Legal Education Initiative (BABSEACLE) Myanmar team, at the East Yangon University Campus, in Myanmar, on the 4th – 5th February, 2016. The event took place over two days and was run by Myanmar Law teachers, trainers from BABSEACLE and its international partners DLA Piper/New Perimeter, UNDP, Herbert Smith Freehills (HSF) and the Irish Rule of Law International. The aim of the workshop was to prepare the students for the CLE Mock Trial event planned in East Yangon University for the 6th and the 7th of February 2016. Read more!
My Personal Development Resulting from the 2nd National Myanmar CLE Mock Trial Event
As the Access to Justice (A2J) Events Initiative Coordinator for Bridges Across Borders Southeast Asia Community Legal Education Initiative (BABSEACLE) I can definitely say that this year’s 2nd National Myanmar CLE Mock Trial Event, that was held February 6th and 7th, in East Yangon University was really amazing. Thanks to the February 4th and 5th Myanmar CLE Mock Trial Workshop, held at the same university, the students were well prepared, and showed solid skills, during the different steps of the CLE mock trial, such as interviewing, argumentation skills, reading, case theory development, etc.
A Journey in Law – Myanmar
Having occasionally volunteered with Bridges Across Borders Southeast Asia Community Legal Education Initiative (BABSEACLE), over the last five years, I was delighted to find an opportunity to volunteer and work with the BABSEACLE team in Yangon, Myanmar, and to take a 6 month sabbatical from my role in legal education, at the Law Society of Ireland and was seconded to volunteer with BABSEACLE. Read more!
DULSA: Myanmar’s First Law Students’ Group
Although there have been no student-led law students’ groups in Myanmar, for many years, the country is transforming, and we see a lot of positive changes, especially in the important role that law students play. Encouraged by Dr. Daw Mon Mon Tar, Professor and Head of Department, Dagon University (DU) law students formed a law students’ group, called the Dagon University Law Students’ Association (DULSA), at the beginning of the academic year, December 2015.
CLE Training to the Village Leader in Luangnamtha and Oudomxay Province
Between the 24thof January and the 2ndof February 2016, representatives from The Faculty of Law and Political Science Clinical Legal Education(FLP CLE) went to the North of Laos, Luangnamtha and Oudomxay Province, to do a 2day training of trainers (for each District) to 29 village leaders of 3 different districts: Sing District, in Luangnamtha Province, and Lar and Namor Districts in Oudomxay Province.
The first Laos video on Evaluation Learning & Advocacy (L&A) Project
The L&A Project is a pilot project that is based in Fueng District, Vientiane Province. It is supported by the Mekong Regional Land Governance (MRLG), and the Lao Land Right Group (LLRG), and is supported by a number of institutions including the National University of Laos Faculty of Law and Political Science Clinical Legal Education (FLP CLE), the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE), the Ministry of Justice, the Laos National Assembly (NA), the Lao Woman’s Union (LWU) and the Village Focus International (VFI).
Developing Essential Laos Clinical and Community Legal Education (CLE) Materials
The Faculty of Law and Political Science Clinical Legal Education (FLPCLE) programs have been operating successfully since 2007. To date they have done many remarkable things in improving justice education and helping to ensure greater access to justice and rule of law. The programs to date have mainly focused on Community Teaching/Street Law activities across Laos.
Launching the Women’s Access to Justice (WAJ) Project “Bringing Justice Closer to Women Suffering from Gender Based Violence(GVB)”
On the 7th April, 2016, at the Helvetas Office in Vientiane, Laos, Bridges Across Borders South East Asia Community Legal Education Initiative (BABSEACLE), The Association of Development of Women and Legal Education (ADWLE) and HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) Consortium Agreement for the Project Implementation of “Bringing Justice Closer to Women suffering from Gender Based Violence(GVB)” , or the “Women’s Access to Justice (WAJ)” project in short. The project is funded by the European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR) and is a three-and-a-half-year project. Read more!
BABSEACLE is pleased to introduce its newest members at the BABSEACLE team.
2nd Asia CLE Summer School 9-18 June 2016
Bridges Across Borders Southeast Asia Community Legal Education Initiative (BABSEACLE), along with the Global Alliance for Justice Education (GAJE), and Southeast Asia Clinical Legal Education Association (SEACLEA), are excited to announce that we will be hosting another Regional CLE Summer School on the 9th-18th of June, 2016. The Asia CLE Summer School will take place at the Chiang Mai Hill Hotel in Chiang Mai, Thailand.
“The Impact of Pro Bono on Transformational Change”
The 5th Asia Pro Bono Conference (August 31 – September 1), and other side access to justice related events (dates to be determined), are being organized by BABSEACLE and its regional and global Consortium partners. This impactful, regionally developed and guided Conference is being coordinated and held side by side with the PILnet 3rd Asia Pro Bono Forum (August 29-30). Collectively the Conference and Forum is being referred to as the Asia Pro Bono Exchange (August 29 – September 1). The theme of this year’s 5th Asia Pro Bono Conference is “The Impact of Pro Bono on Transformational Change”. Read more!
SAVE THE MEMORY!
Remembering and Celebrating Esther Lardent: Pro Bono Visionary, World Changer and Mentor