Family Legal Clinic, the local NGO which provides pro bono legal advice to people with family-related or domestic violence issues, is to commence services in southernmost Addu City this Monday.
In a press release, FLC stated that it will hold weekly legal consultations every Monday night in Addu, and clients seeking FLC’s services can contact the NGO via its Addu hotline 9989881 between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. on working days.
FLC is expanding to Addu under a project supported by free aid from the US Embassy in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The NGO held special training programs throughout March targeting law students, and the lawyers and employees at Maradhoo-based law firm Lawcraft to prepare for FLC’s Addu launch. FLC revealed that 17 individuals had participated and completed the programs.
FLC further revealed plans to conduct awareness programs in all the wards of Addu City, aiming to familiarize the public with the rights accorded under the Family Act and Domestic Violence Prevention Act, and how to fill out relevant forms. The first public awareness gathering is scheduled to be held in Maradhoo at 8:00 p.m. Sunday night.
Family Legal Clinic, which was founded in 2014 in collaboration with Hope for Women and registered as an independent NGO in 2017, currently has 17 specially trained lawyers. The NGO kicked off a crowdfunding campaign on March 12 this year, seeking donations from the public and corporations in a bid to provide free equal opportunities, rights and justice for women, children and men facing domestic issues.
FLC had noted that most Maldivians, especially women, low-income workers, disabled persons and the elderly, cannot afford legal representatives, and appealed everyone to contribute to the campaign and support the NGO’s cause to provide “legal support that should always be a ‘right’ and not simply a ‘privilege’.”