Legal Education & Awareness Programme ( LEAP)

A leap of faith, a world of difference

WHAT IS LEAP?

LEAP is a pro-bono initiative primarily aimed at raising awareness among disadvantaged persons on their legal rights, and the possible legal consequences of their actions. The aim of this project would be to ultimately allow youths to be more aware of the heavy price that comes with committing crimes. We also encourage them to direct their attention to more lawful and meaningful activities as well. At such a young age, these youth are more likely to go astray, either committing crimes on their own or becoming victims of certain crimes, and this may happen because they are unaware of their legal rights and responsibilities.  The LEAP programme thus aims to increase their access to justice, by inculcating in these youth basic legal knowledge of the consequences of their actions, and the organizations that they can approach for assistance.

WHO DO WE WORK WITH?

Typically aged 13-17, LEAP’s main target audience has been youth in general. However, LEAP has grown to focus specifically on youth that are generally believed to be at-risk because of their disadvantaged backgrounds. Presently, we work with 4 main beneficiaries: Thye Hua Kwan Moral Charity, PAVE, Spectra Secondary School, and Crest Secondary School. Thye Hua Kwan and PAVE refer to us children of their clients that they believe can benefit from our programme  The students of Crest and Spectra are those who finished in the bottom 5% of their cohort, and are likely to graduate and enter straight into the workforce.

LEAP is currently a partner with various organisations, and our programmes target youths who are from disadvantaged backgrounds. Through our partnership with these organisations, LEAP is able to reach out to a large group of young people who are at an impressionable stage of their lives, and impart to them essential legal knowledge that would guide these youth towards making better decisions. The organisations we work with include:

1)      Thye Hua Kuan Moral Charities

2)      Unity Secondary School

3)      Hong Kah Secondary School

4)      SPECTRA Secondary School

LEAP sessions are mostly conducted in the form of group discussions, skits, games and role-play. This is because these youths generally get bored during traditional presentation style sessions. Thus, LEAP volunteers will explore and experiment with more creative ways to explain these legal concepts to the youths in a manner that ensures maximum retention by them. On top of imparting legal knowledge, LEAP volunteers also play the role of a senior, friend and mentor to these youths, and through these meaningful interactions with the youths, we hope that the volunteers can inspire the youths as well.

 

Our programme can cover a large range of legal issues catered to the specific needs of this target group, from family-related topics such as child abuse, family violence, and beyond parental control, to commonly committed teen crimes such as cyber bullying, drug abuse, public disorder, and gambling. Our partner organisations work with us in tailoring the programme that would suit the needs of the youths at their organisation the best.

–          LEAP@ThyeHuaKuan: Volunteers work with secondary school children living in Jurong West who have been referred to us by the Family Service Centre. Conducted once every two weeks, each session aims to impart to these youth essential knowledge about relatable topics such as drugs and substance abuse.  LEAP@HongKah and LEAP@Unity conduct similar programmes as well.

–          LEAP@Spectra: Volunteers conduct an assembly programme for an entire level of students which consists of a skit as well as a quiz at the end to reinforce the issues that were covered during the session.

LEAP1

Time period: LEAP sessions for Spectra and Crest previously were conducted during recess week. Sessions for PAVE are conducted on Saturdays in Semester 2. Preparation for LEAP sessions generally start a few weeks in advance.

Commitment: Preparatory meetings and actual event