London—Dentons has won "Best International Pro Bono Award" at the LawWorks Pro Bono Awards 2020 for the Greece Pro Bono Collaborative, along with the other Collaborative members: Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe; White & Case; Ashurst; Allen & Overy; Charles Russell Speechlys; and the NGO, European Lawyers in Lesvos (ELIL).
Based on the island of Lesvos, the Collaborative aims to assist with the migration crisis by increasing migrants’ access to legal services, monitoring issues of process and rule of law, and building legal capacity in Greece. Volunteers travel to Lesvos to help asylum seekers with first instance interviews and family reunification with support from ELIL, which has provided free legal assistance on Lesvos through its team of full-time Greek asylum lawyers and volunteers since July 2016.
More than 55 volunteers from the law firms have travelled to Lesvos to be seconded with ELIL for two-week periods. To date, the Collaborative volunteers have advised over 1,400 asylum seekers. Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Collaborative adapted, and volunteers have been supporting ELIL and asylum seekers remotely.
The LawWorks Awards recognise and celebrate achievement in legal pro bono work, undertaken by organisations and individuals, and the commitment of the legal sector in enabling access to justice and supporting individuals, communities and not-for-profit organisations.
The Greece Pro Bono Collaborative also won 'Innovation in Social Responsibility' at the Financial Times Innovative Lawyers Awards Europe, "CSR Innovation (Multi-Firm)" at the Legal Innovation Awards and "PILnet Pro Bono Publico Award" at the PILnet Global Forum. The Collaborative was also highly commended for Pro Bono Initiative of the Year at The Lawyer Awards.
For more information about ELIL and the recent award wins, please visit: www.europeanlawyersinlesvos.eu.
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