Student collaboration with the ILBF―building a global community of future lawyers

As the summer vacation draws to a close, law students worldwide are preparing for the start of a new term. Students in the UK will be busy making sure that they have all their text books ready and may be wondering what to do with the old ones… The ILBF has the answer! By donating your old textbooks to the ILBF, or by joining forces with your peers to organise a book drive, you can make a real difference for fellow law students worldwide.

The ILBF has enjoyed great success working with law students from universities and colleges across the UK. Individual donations from students are always gratefully received, but recognising that there is power in numbers, some students are working together to organise book drives and fundraisers to collect and ship large volumes of donated books to their colleagues and classmates across the globe.

For instance, student groups at Nottingham University and the University of Law at Guildford have made a fantastic contribution over the last year.

Nottingham University

Over the last 10 months, students from Nottingham University’s Junior Lawyers Against Poverty Group have held two book drives, collecting over 500 books on core legal subject areas for universities in Zimbabwe and Sierra Leone.

The students also organised a group of student volunteers to pack the books and manage the collection of shipments to Great Zimbabwe University and Midland State University in Zimbabwe and Njala University in Sierra Leone.

These shipments were delivered with the support of the Rule of Law Ambassadors project (see news: Rule of Law Ambassadors project delivers over 250 boxes of books to organisations in Zimbabwe).

Volunteers from Nottingham University, packing books donated by fellow students.

Eloise Dunne headed up the Junior Lawyers Against Poverty Group for the 2018-19 academic year and did a magnificent job on this project, following in the excellent footsteps of Geraldine Hercinckx, who led the group the previous year. Speaking of her experience, Eloise said:

“I feel very privileged to have had the opportunity to help fellow law students on the other side of the world!”

Eloise Dunne, Junior Lawyers Against Poverty Group, Nottingham University

Eloise was helped by a number of student volunteers:

Oluwadamilola Babalola, Henry Bee, Milly Dawson, Divine Ephraim-Osunde, Megan Firth, Andrea George, Azaria Heng, Simmy Hoonjan, Shanel Johnson, James King, Yasmin Lermer, Katherine Mosley, Osamamen Osa-Idahosa, Sarah O’Shea, Zak Patel Anna-Maria Poqu, Sephlin Sam, Eva-Maria Spitzer.

Osamamen Osa-Idahosa will head up the Junior Lawyers Against Poverty Group from September 2019. This will be the third year of Nottingham University’s collaboration with the ILBF and we look forward to working with them.

University of Law, Guildford

Over the last two years, students from the University of Law in Guildford have organised a number of events in support of the ILBF, collecting and packing books and holding bake sales to raise much needed funds for shipments.

Last year, books donated by students at the University of Law were sent to Wollo University in Ethiopia, funded by a grant from Latham & Watkins (see news: Wollo University receives text books from University of Law).

Most recently, volunteers at the University of Law packed a large shipment of books including student texts, Halsbury’s Laws, The Digest and Current Law, for shipment to the Women’s University in Africa, in Zimbabwe.

Volunteers from the University of Law, Guilford, fundraising for ILBF shipments.

The group is run by Helen Carter, Associate Professor, LLB Course Leader and Bar Liaison Tutor:

“In the spring of 2019, a small and dedicated team of students from the Guildford campus of the University of Law raised money and advertised to collect books for the ILBF.

The students raised enough money to get their books to port and collected 5 boxes of student textbooks. The library then generously added to this through collecting withdrawn books and donating 3 whole sets of legal encyclopaedia which were being updated. The result was almost 50 boxes of good quality legal texts to be donated.

As this is the 100 year anniversary of English women in law, it was a wonderful coincidence to find that the Women’s University in Zimbabwe were in need of a substantial donation. The staff and students at the University of Law, Guildford, have been celebrating the First 100 Years project and were delighted to give their support to a women’s university.”

Helen Carter, University of Law, Guildford

The student volunteers this year were: Karine DaSilva, Sandeep Dhanjal, Thomas Dickens, Joanne Doherty, Oliver Hodgson and Joel Wish.

Student collaboration can make a difference at home and away

These projects are great examples of student collaboration making a real difference. All law students rely on having access to the necessary resources for their legal education. The availability of good quality legal text books has an incredibly positive impact for the whole legal profession.

“These are great stories of students on one side of the world helping their peers on the other and all in the name of legal education and the rule of law.”

Katrina Crossley, ILBF Chief Executive

The ILBF relies on the support of the whole UK legal community, including law students like those at Nottingham University and the University of Law at Guildford. In engaging with the ILBF, students also gain vital skills and experience, working together on projects and initiatives for the benefit of the global legal community. Everyone wins!

Interested? Get involved!

Whether you are a law student, a rep for your student law society, a law librarian, or an ex-law student looking to make space on your bookshelves, the ILBF is pleased to hear from anyone looking to contribute.

If you have books you would like to donate, or if you are interested in organising a book drive or fundraiser at your university or law school, please see our book donation page and do get in touch!