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“Honoured To Be With The LP!”

It’s time to meet another notable figure at the Lisbon Project, Dr. Luciana. She is one of the valued lawyers in the Legal Aid Program!

Dr. Luciana has been practicing law for over 20 years. When interviewed, she stressed how proud and happy she is to be in this profession.

“I consider being a lawyer an honour, because the people I represent place their trust in me to fight for their rights and, within the law, to seek what is best for them. This is already a great satisfaction!” Dr. Luciana

Dr. Luciana decided to join the Lisbon Project as an “LP Champion” after she listened to an interview featuring Gabriela Faria, our founder and president. In that interview, Gaby explained about the work and mission of the LP. Just like most of our volunteers, Dra. Luciana was inspired by our founder whose passion and dedication to service touched the hearts of many.

“I immediately felt in my heart a strong calling for this noble mission. I joined the team and in each meeting with the beneficiaries I am sure that it was the best decision I ever made.” Dr. Luciana

Additionally, Dr. Luciana also mentions how the social impact of the Legal Aid Program is visible as the state cannot support all those who need legal assistance and the resources are limited.

Upon entering a new country, legal status is at the top of the priority list. The Legal Aid Program’s goal is to help migrants and refugees better understand the legalization process in Portugal through workshops and, if needed for more complex situations, one-to-one consultations with our partner lawyers.

There are 3 main initiatives under the Legal Aid Program namely the Legal Clinic, Bridge Team Clinic and Legal Workshops. The Legal Clinic takes place every other Tuesday with Dra. Helena and every other Wednesday with Dra. Luciana. The Legal Clinic involves thirty-minute meetings with pro bono lawyers where community members can clarify any legal questions. Bridge Team Clinics involve meetings with bridge team volunteers where support is given in accessing Portuguese administrative requests related to Finanças, SEF, IMT, health, banking etc. Lastly, legal workshops are in place for seminars discussing the rights and duties of migrants in Portugal and how the Portuguese legal system functions.

“Organisations such as the Lisbon Project, which enter these gaps and try to remedy at least a part of the deficit, bring a great gain to society. The beneficiary, who in general is debilitated, fragile in the face of their condition of life, sometimes finds themselves alone, feeling powerless in the face of injustices that in their view, only happen because they are foreigners or unemployed or less favored by any fact. When they find someone to support them and show them a way through the chaos, they feel valued and respected.” Dr. Luciana

Dr. Luciana also shared this valuable insight: “The Lisbon Project, brings together professionals from various fields, namely the legal sector, and seeks the insertion of the individual who finds himself in a vulnerable and unprotected situation, within the context foreseen in the Portuguese Constitution in article 20: “1. Everyone is guaranteed access to the law and to the courts to defend their rights and legally protected interests, and justice cannot be denied to anyone due to insufficient economic means. 2. Everyone has the right, under the terms of the law, to legal information and consultation, to legal counsel and to be accompanied by a lawyer before any authority.””

Like Dr. Luciana, the Lisbon Project takes pride in imparting essential knowledge of Portuguese law. Our hearts are motivated when we provide a voice to the voiceless.

Thanks to our Legal Clinic champions Helena and Luciana for ensuring working towards justice and giving the most vulnerable access to someone who can help them grasp their rights and the legal framework of their new home!

by Mona


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