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The ‘Creating an optimal model of legal aid in the Canton of Sarajevo’ project is aimed at improving the free legal aid system in the Canton of Sarajevo and at enhancing the system of protection and the exercise of guaranteed rights of marginalised peoples through cooperation and partnership between non-governmental organisations and governmental institutions.

The Foundation of Local Democracy (FLD) held a roundtable event in March 2014 with the participation of all the relevant stakeholders, including representatives of NGOs and institutions who have experience in working with marginalised women such as the Association of Women Victims of War and the Association of Single Parents. During the roundtable, the importance of providing  free legal aid to the most vulnerable groups was discussed and proposals for the improvement of mutual cooperation were presented.

The participants of the roundtable agreed to intensively cooperate regarding the system of free legal aid and to contribute to the improvement of the system by increasing the visibility of all the available services to citizens. The FLD also created a Handbook for marginalized citizens in the Canton of Sarajevo which provides all the necessary information in the area of Social and Family Law. A register of those who provide free legal aid and a list of services and contacts are included in the Handbook.

As part of this project, a representative of the FLD Center for Free Legal Aid participated in the study visits in London and Dublin and had the opportunity to learn more about the most efficient European practices. This was also an occasion to assess and analyse what has already been done in this area, as well as to import new methods in practical work.

The project also contributes to the adoption of a law on free legal assistance at the state level, along with other interested NGOs.

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