Program Spotlight: Legal Advice Clinics

The Women’s Centre offers a space for women to receive support, build community and work for change. Women who access the Centre may be seeking assistance for a diverse number of issues, including but not limited to poverty, family breakdown, unemployment, domestic violence, isolation and discrimination. Dealing with issues like these is not easy, and the Centre works to address the unique needs of women by offering a variety of services.

Challenges women in our community are facing can often lead to, or even stem from, legal issues, and finding affordable advice on how to navigate legal challenges can be difficult at best. This is why the Women’s Centre hosts legal advice clinics for women, something we have been doing for over 15 years!

The free 30-minute legal advice clinics offered at the Centre are a space for any woman to access preliminary information, and advice on next steps from trained lawyers who volunteer their time to provide information. In addition to legal clinics, the Centre also facilitates access to a Notary Public, Commissioner of Oaths, and hosts ID clinics in partnership with Calgary Legal Guidance. In all of these programs, we work to ensure we are creating a safe, empathetic and non-judgmental space where women are able to gain information and support. In the first 8 months of 2018, a total of 243 women accessed legal services at the Women’s Centre!

All of the lawyers who provide advice at our legal clinics are women. These lawyers volunteer their time to the Centre, to ensure more women are able to access legal advice no matter their economic situation. These lawyers work to equip women with the information and options they ask for, so women can feel empowered and in control of their situations.

Time and time again, women in our community tell us they leave our Legal Advice Clinics feeling more knowledgeable, and more confident. One women who attended a clinic had the following to say:

“The clinic helped me know where to start dealing with the problem. Thank you, and more power. I am glad that an agency is here to help women in need.”

We would like to say a big thank you to our partners who make our Legal Advice Clinics. Our clinics would not be possible without the support of the Alberta Law Foundation, and we are incredibly grateful for our partnerships without with Calgary Legal Guidance, Elizabeth Fry Society and Pro Bono Alberta, all of whom work year after year to make sure women are able to access legal resources inside and outside of the Centre. Finally, we would like to express a huge thank you to our volunteer lawyers who make this program possible, and who support and inspire women in our community. Thanks to your dedication and ongoing commitment, women leave feeling more in control and supported!

Women who are seeking legal advice for family, non-family or immigration concerns can book an appointment with one of our volunteer lawyers by calling The Women’s Centre at 403-265-1155 on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday from 2-8 pm.

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