Professor Harding said the service could only be temporary. “We haven’t got the financial backing to make it permanent.” The service ... will operate for nine months. - ‘Student law service planned’, Sydney Morning Herald, 1 July 1981.
Despite this cautious and modest beginning , the Kingsford Legal Centre, proudly (and loudly!!) celebrates its 40th year of operation in 2021. Over the past 40 years KLC staff, students and volunteers have not only provided quality free legal advice to tens of thousands of clients from the Randwick and ex-Botany Council areas but we have also educated around 6,000 UNSW Law & Justice Faculty students. Our impact has been resonant and deep to many vulnerable and disadvantaged community members as well as our alumni.
In 2021 we produced a Kingsford Legal Centre 40 Years of Impact Report which evidences the impact KLC has had on our students, communities, volunteeers, pro bono partners - all of our stakeholders.
Our Impact on the Justice System
Our Impact on Clients
Over 40 years, KLC has helped more than 40,000 clients. Our service delivery model is flexible and responsive to our most vulnerable client's needs.
In 2020 we surveyed our casework clients to measure the impact our help had on their lives:-
Our Casework Clients Told Us
- KLC is for the common man. I remain grateful to the KLC. The solicitor that represented me at the conciliation was confident and did a very good job.
- KLC and especially the solicitor that worked on my case was very accommodative and pleasant to work with. She listened to our case thoroughly and explained steps accordingly. Very thankful for her help!
In 2020 we also surveyed our advice clients to measure the impact our help had on their lives:-
Our Advice Clients Told Us
- The help I received from KLC help me in understanding where I stand and what I can do about my problem. I will definitely contact them again if I have any further problems as they were polite and helpful. (though I hope I do not have to contact them again)
- This is a very important community service that should be continued.
- Thorough, timely, focussed and professional. Thank you for that.
Our Impact on Students
Over 500 UNSW Sydney Law and Justice Faculty students attend KLC every year across a range of courses. This amounts to well over 5,000 students over the past 40 years. In 2020 we surveyed over 100 of our alumni to measure the impact their time at KLC had on their careers:-
Our Alumni Told Us
- it brought the Law to life, in a way that the classroom never did
- It was a profoundly transformative and eye-opening experience
- Yes, further inspired me to help people
- My time at KLC was formative in my career. Not only did it make me want to be a lawyer, it made me see what kind of lawyer I want to be - dedicated and compassionate
- I wouldn’t have become a lawyer if klc didn’t open my eyes to public interest law
Our Impact - Volunteers
The true Unsung Heroes of KLC are our wonderful volunteers. Through rain, sleet, hail and pandemic they turn up to ensure that that there is access to justice for all. In 2020/21 we have a cohort of 80 volunteers providing quality legal advice over 7 advice nights per fortnight - that's around 35 to 40 advices per week.
Our Volunteers Told Us
- I'd like to acknowledge my huge admiration and gratitude to the supervising solicitors. They are knowledgeable, patient and tireless - a complete inspiration to me - especially when we're dealing with difficult clients. They are also fun and lovely to work with. A special shout-out to Di Anagnos who is just an absolute legend. Sometimes I'm tired from work and don't feel like coming but I hate to disappoint Di and she always makes the experience worthwhile!
Different to my day to day work; every client presents a challenge to get on top of an unfamiliar area of law and to engage in problem solving; gain genuine insight into people's lives, a very authentic experience; permanent staff at KLC are very nice and helpf
(Best thing about volunteering) - Improving access to justice whilst giving students a unique insight into non-corporate law.