HeLP Legal Services Clinic Celebrates 10 Years

In celebration of the HeLP Legal Services Clinic’s 10th Anniversary, the Georgia State University College of Law hosted a reception on September 14, 2017. HeLP Clinic alumni, along with College of Law students, faculty, staff, and other esteemed members of the bar and Atlanta community came together to celebrate a decade of service and inter-professional collaboration.

The HeLP Clinic began in 2007 as part of the educational component of the Health Law Partnership, a collaboration among Georgia State University College of Law, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta and Atlanta Legal Aid Society. The clinic also collaborates with several community partners, including Morehouse School of Medicine and Emory University School of Medicine.

HeLP Clinic co-director Lisa Bliss enjoyed reflecting on the accomplishments of the clinic and its students over the last ten years. “Clinical education is about both education and service. What makes the HeLP Clinic unique is the interdisciplinary form that both the education and service take. Our law students have worked together on cases with physicians, medical students, social work students, and other professionals. By doing so, we provide a specialized, holistic approach to solving client problems, and students from multiple disciplines become better at communication and collaboration,” she said. “It has been a rewarding ten years, and we were so happy to celebrate it with our students, family, and friends.”

“The anniversary celebration provided a fitting opportunity to acknowledge and thank our clinic alumni who continue to support the mission and effort of the HeLP Clinic. Our graduates volunteer to handle cases, thus expanding our ability to provide service to clients, serve on HeLP’s Advisory Council, provide educational programming to residents and fellows, and act as mentors to current students, “said Sylvia Caley, co-director of the HeLP Clinic. “The HeLP Clinic’s influence and legacy reaches well beyond the law school doors,” she said.

In ten years, the HeLP Clinic has educated more than 270 students from multiple disciplines, all working together to resolve the health-harming legal needs of low-income families in Georgia. In the 2016-2017 academic year alone, HeLP Clinic student interns handled more than 40 cases and provided more than 3,000 hours of legal services. Over its ten-year history, the clinic has served approximately 200 clients from 25 different counties in Georgia, recovering more than $1.2 million in benefits for its clients.