Danielle Cavendish

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Highlighted Initiative

University of Maryland Baltimore County Human Rights Brigade March 2015 Panama

Volunteer Activity Description

Global Brigades offers a 7-day Human Rights Brigade for volunteers to participate in throughout the year in Panama. Human Rights Brigades primarily work with rural communities that are under-resourced and largely unaware of their own legal rights. Throughout the week, Human Rights Brigades volunteers shadow Panamanian lawyers to provide pro-bono legal consulting to rural communities. A free legal clinic provides opportunities for volunteers to not only receive experience with Panamanian legal professionals, but also experience first-hand the obstacles to justice and the culture of legal misinformation in rural communities. Volunteers also work to provide capacity building and education-based workshops on various legal concepts to empower communities through education. Additionally, volunteers continue shadowing Panamanian lawyers while they gather important information to initiate the process of resolving family legal cases; many which have been stalled in Panama's legal system through institutional inefficiencies and the prohibitive high costs of legal services. Between brigades, Global Brigades’ in-country staff works to secure legal outcomes and provide follow-up to the community.


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