These four steps will help you develop your Victorian Law Week activity:
Step 1: Choose your topic and target audience
You’ll want to start by deciding on the topic you want to cover and who your target audience will be. What information would benefit your community and who exactly needs to know the information you’re sharing?
When working out your topic, you might want to consider:
- Are you regularly asked questions about certain issues by community members?
- Have you noticed that many community members are experiencing problems with a particular issue?
- Which groups use your neighbourhood house? Are there a lot of older people? Or parents with young children? Think about the issues that would be relevant to them.
Some of the problems that Victorian Law Week activities have addressed in the past include:
- Housing – issues with renting; buying and selling property; owners’ corporation issues; objecting to a planning permit; public housing issues.
- Work – employment rights; discrimination; parental leave; casual employment; superannuation.
- Relationships – separation; divorce; children; consent; harassment; grandparents’ rights.
- Future planning – wills; powers of attorney; medical decision-making.
- Neighbourhood issues – noise complaints; fencing disputes; traffic issues.
- Consumer issues – scams; debts and fines; getting refunds; issues with tradespeople and utility companies.
Check out our guide to setting your purpose and target audience.
Step 2: Decide what type of activity you’d like to run
There is no set format for a Victorian Law Week activity. Think about what style of activity would best suit your target audience and what you want to achieve.
Some options include:
- A drop-in information stand
- Information session with a presentation and Q&A
- Free private 40-minute advice sessions with a private lawyer
- ‘Bring your bills’ day with a legal advice or information component
You might like to check out our guide for deciding your event format.
Step 3: Check your activity meets our criteria
To be accepted into the Victorian Law Week program, your activity must meet our criteria. Activities must:
- Take place within Victoria
- Improve the Victorian community’s understanding of the law or the legal system
- Be designed for individuals or small businesses
- Be free of charge
- Not be invitation only
Please note that the following activities do not meet our criteria:
- Activities where the primary audience is people working in the legal sector.
- Activities about recruitment and career progression in the law.
- Activities only open to people employed at a specific workplace.
Step 4: Partner with a legal expert to deliver the content
You will need to partner with a law firm, community legal centre or other subject matter expert to deliver the content.
Do you already have a relationship with a local lawyer or community legal centre? Do they practise in the area you want cover? Approach them to find out whether they would like to work with you to deliver your Victorian Law Week activity. Check out our tips for what to discuss with your prospective partner.
If you don’t already know someone you can partner with, then you might like to:
Approach your local Community Legal Centre
Community Legal Centres are independent community organisations that provide legal services to the public, including legal advice and community legal education.
Each Community Legal Centre has different legal issues they can help with and specific catchment areas they service – these are usually outlined on their website.
To find a Community Legal Centre, search the directory on the Federation of Community Legal Centres Vic’s website.
Find a private lawyer who practises in the relevant area of law and ask whether they will partner with you
You can search for lawyers by area of law and location using the Law Institute of Victoria’s Find Your Lawyer Referral Service.
Think about whether there are other organisations you can partner with who provide legal information or help resolve complaints
These may include:
- Industry Ombudsmen
- Regulators such as Consumer Affairs Victoria
- Victoria Police – many local stations run community outreach programs such as Coffee with a Cop
- Specialist support services, such as IDCARE
- Your local council, if running a session on local laws