What is a Human Rights Brigade?
The mission of Human Rights Brigades is to empower rural
communities in Panama with limited to no access to legal
resources with the professional guidance and education to
resolve their civil and property disputes. Human Rights
Brigades volunteers have the opportunity to work directly with
Panamanian lawyers to provide pro-bono legal consulting to
rural communities. Volunteers offer services through a free
legal clinic, where volunteers shadow and assist lawyers as
they provide legal consulting to community members.
Volunteers also work with lawyers to provide land titling to
families, empowering them with rights and government
benefits that they would not have received otherwise. Human
Rights Brigades primarily works with rural communities that
are under resourced and largely unaware of their legal rights.
Additionally, volunteers provide legal capacity building
workshops on various legal concepts to empower
communities through education. Between brigades, Global
Brigades’ in-country staff works to secure legal outcomes and
provide follow-up to the community.
Student volunteers do not need prior knowledge in Panamanian
legal frameworks, as they will be shadowing Panamanian lawyers
who will be helping to educate students on Panamanian laws
as they are providing legal referrals and advice to
Brigade Length & Logistics
The Human Rights Brigade is for 7-10 days in Panama. Interested Human Rights Chapters will work with a Global Brigades Advisor to select their brigade dates and book their airfare through Global Brigades' travel partners. Each Chapter then fundraises for the program contribution and airfare needed for the brigade. Upon arrival in Panama, Global Brigades staff pickup students from the airport and transport students to a safe and secure lodging facility where they will be lodged throughout the duration of the brigade. Each day volunteers and staff commute to and from the community to provide workshops and consulting. All meals, in-country transportation, coordinators, translators, and supplies are provided during the brigade.