Law Graduate Wins Award For Pro Bono Work

Solicitors Applaud Graduate's Community Focus

24.11.2011

A GRADUATE with a passion for providing free initial legal assistance to those in need has been recognised by a top tier law firm.

Saakidhya Manohara, who lives in Walsall Wood, won the Irwin Mitchell Pro Bono prize as part of this year’s National Pro Bono Week.

The 24-year-old, who graduated from the College of Law this year, volunteered at the Legal Advice Centre whilst she was studying.

Saakidhya, who is currently combining job hunting, freelance interpreting, registering to volunteer at the Citizen’s Advice Bureau and training with the Birmingham Rowing Club's women’s squad, said she enjoyed being given responsibility at the Legal Advice Centre.

She said: “Doing pro bono work at the Legal Advice Clinic enabled me to put my legal training to good use to make a positive impact on people’s lives.

“I got the chance to work on a variety of cases, from straightforward breach of contract and employment cases to a case on defamation, which was extremely interesting and challenging at the same time.

"Working for real clients on real cases really fired my passion in Law. Undertaking pro bono was an incredibly emotionally rewarding experience and being awarded the prize was simply the icing on the cake."

Ann Houghton, solicitor at the Midlands’ offices of Irwin Mitchell, said: “Pro Bono work is high on Irwin Mitchell’s agenda and we are delighted to have sponsored a Pro Bono room at the College of Law this year.

“As a result, we feel it is important to recognise the achievements of young lawyers who get involved in Pro Bono work from the very start of their careers.

“Saakidhya has made a tremendous contribution to the pro bono work of the Legal Advice Centre and we believe it is important that this is recognised so that other young lawyers are inspired to take on similar challenges.”