A PARTNERSHIP program, which provides legal services to patients, was nominated in the Justice Awards.
The awards recognise individuals and groups who have made an outstanding contribution to improving access to justice, especially for socially and economically disadvantaged people in NSW.
Cancer Council NSW, Mid North Coast Cancer Institute with Donovan Oates Hannaford Lawyers were nominated in the Pro Bono Partnership Award.
And while the trio did not win, the nomination was considered recognition in itself.
Donovan Oates Hannaford Lawyers partner Hadyn Oriti said the nomination was a very pleasing recognition that there was much the legal profession did that was appreciated and valued by our community.
Mr Oriti said he got quite a sense of personal satisfaction by providing legal assistance through the partnership.
The Cancer Council initiated the program, in response to an unmet legal need among people with cancer, which saw partnerships formed with law firms to provide legal services to patients.
Donovan Oates Hannaford joined the program in 2010.
The firm responds to requests to provide legal assistance to cancer and palliative care patients of the Mid North Coast Cancer Institute and across the Hastings area.
Cancer Council national pro bono manager Maria Shaw said they would like to congratulate everyone involved in the partnership for making the finals of the 2016 Justice Awards.
She said they were thrilled that the generous voluntary support of Donovan Oates Hannaford and Mid North Coast Cancer Institute for Cancer Council’s Pro Bono Program had been recognised.
“Since joining in 2010, Donovan Oates Hannaford has taken on 39 legal referrals from the program, providing free legal advice on matters such as workplace issues, debt and credit matters and end-of-life legal matters, to people affected by cancer who cannot afford to pay for it,” Maria said.
“With the help of an expert, solving these issues can be life-changing, providing peace of mind and allowing people to focus on their health.”
Mid North Coast Cancer Institute social worker Nicole Edwards said this service ensured cancer patients, without the means to do so otherwise, were able to manage their affairs and provide peace of mind and reassurance at this very difficult time.
Anybody affected by cancer who is in financial distress or wishing to learn more about these services should contact Cancer Council on 13 11 20.
The 18th annual Justice Awards, hosted by the Law and Justice Foundation of NSW, were presented on October 13 at Parliament House in Sydney.
Meanwhile, Wollongong Women’s Information Service and the law firm, Carter Ferguson, won the Pro Bono Partnership Award for their collaboration to provide pro bono legal services to women experiencing domestic violence.
The Pro Bono Partnership Award is presented to private law firms or community legal centres that have developed an outstanding pro bono legal relationship resulting in improved access to justice for the disadvantaged.