It has been a busy year for BABSEACLE Initiative program in 2009 with the CLE train making many stops throughout the Southeast Asian region and the world and December was no different. The CLE train most recent stops this December 2009, saw BABSEACLE’s involvement in a further three CLE workshops in Vietnam, with two in Hanoi and another in Vinh.

On the 12th and 13th December 2009, BABSEACLE in association with the Vietnam National University (VNU) in Hanoi, successfully conducted a Supervisors of In-House Clinic Training Workshop for the newly opened VNU Legal Aid Clinic. The VNU workshop was attended by over 30 participants; among them a team of enthusiastic lawyers who are eager to help the CLE program by supervising and assessing the CLE law students, as well as dedicated law professors and CLE trainers from the Vietnam National University (Hanoi), the Institute for Policy and Law Development (PLD), Vietnam Trade Union and Hanoi Law University.

Throughout the workshop, the attendees were provided with knowledge of how to develop and successfully carry out an In-House Legal Clinic consultation teachings to students, as well as learning how to resolve common supervising issues.

After a busy 2 day stop in Hanoi, the CLE train steamed ahead again, with BABSEACLE and it’s in- country partner, PLD, conducting another workshop at Vinh University, for 3 days, from the 15th Dec to 17th Dec 2009. This workshop provided participants with information and understanding about the common issues of establishing, managing and maintaining a CLE program at their universities. The Vinh workshop attracted more than 30 attendees from all over Vietnam including students and professors from Vinh University, VNU Hanoi, Hanoi Law University, VNU Ho Chi Minh City and Hue University.

This workshop also provided a fantastic networking opportunity for PLD, VNU and Vinh University to connect with regional CLE teams that had traveled to Vinh to be a part of the workshop. The regional participates were CLE students from the University of Malaya, Malaysia and CLE team from the National University of Laos, Faculty of Law and Political Science. Such an international and experienced delegation provided invaluable feedback and practical information for both the organizers of the workshop and the attendees.

For the final stop for the Vietnam CLE train in 2009, it was back to Hanoi with a student focused workshop conducted by the VNU on the 18th, 19th and 20th December 2009.

This workshop provided law students new to the CLE program with the relevant legal knowledge and skills of working in a CLE program including vital information about working in an In-House legal clinic and providing community teachings in marginalized communities.  As well, the workshop provided the law students a unique and incredible opportunity to be able to understand real issues related to their legal professions as well as developing practical legal skills utilizing ethical standards.

BABSEACLE hopes that with our continued help and support universities throughout Vietnam can have a chance to develop their own CLE programs, create new connections with other universities in Vietnam and throughout the world, and strengthen and grow CLE programs through shared experience.

BABSEACLE would like to thank all the organizations involved in these workshops, including PLD, VNU (Hanoi)/LERES Center and Vinh University, for all their hard work in making the workshops such a success. We look forward to our continued working partnership with them to strengthen CLE programs throughout Vietnam and the rest of the world.