Jia Min: My Pro Bono (RELAC) Experience

When it was time for the freshman to select CCAs for the coming academic year in NUS Law School, the Pro Bono Club was undoubtedly my choice CCA. As much as I love and live life to the fullest for myself, a life lived for oneself only would be a really meaningless one. I have always believed in giving back to the community, and as a Law student, I feel that this can be most appropriately done through Pro Bono work. I chose to join the RELAC team in particular because I felt I could make the greatest impact there through raising legal awareness among different sectors of the community – legal awareness being something few can claim to possess.

In my short time in RELAC, I have learnt so much from all the teenagers I had the chance of interacting with, and most importantly, I had a lot of fun. Notably, the RELAC team went down to Northlight School last September and held a short workshop comprising of a presentation, skit and a discussion session on the topic of Gangsterism. I had the honour of portraying an aggrieved mother whose sons turned to Gangsterism and eventually landed themselves in jail. That experience was immensely fun, and is something I believe will hit home to a lot of the teenagers because they will come to realise that their wrong decisions sometimes hurt their parents more than they hurt themselves in the end. The team got to interact a lot with the teenagers as well, and they recounted to us their personal encounters with real life gangs and even confided in us about how some of their close friends and family were a part of one. It was surprisingly overwhelming and heartening to hear them reflect on their experiences with levels of maturity and depth well beyond their age. We ended up being the ones learning from the teenagers’ experiences. This is what I love most about RELAC – the fact that there is constant interaction with people from all walks of life such that there is always heartfelt sharing and learning going both ways. It has certainly been an enriching journey for my friends and I as part of the RELAC team. We are all looking forward to more of these sessions and perhaps even more interesting initiatives to help raise legal awareness among the underprivileged in our coming years in Law School.

Thiam Jia Min
NUS Law School Year 1
Pro Bono Group (RELAC)