Joining the VCLS
Becoming a Member
Who can join?
Any person who supports the purposes and ascribes to the statement of faith of the Victorian Christian Legal Society is eligible to become a member. More information about the Society may be found on our ‘About Us’ page, or in our Constitution.
How do I join?
What are the fees?
As of 1 July 2017, our membership fees are as follows:
Student member – $5.00 per annum
(This type of membership is for students studying undergraduate/postgraduate/Juris Doctor degrees, or for those who are seeking employment)
Full member – $20.00 per annum
(This type of membership is for those who are working as a paralegal/workplace trainee/solicitor/barrister/member of judiciary/academic/other professional)
Friend of the VCLS – $100 per annum
(Full membership with voluntary donation)
Membership is from 1 July annually. There is no prorated amount.
The Society provides a number of benefits to its members. Our key activities are outlined below.
Access to referral service
Practitioner members may request that they receive referrals from our Find a Lawyer service. This service is only available to members. We are often approached by Christians looking for a lawyer who share their faith. We usually receive around 60 – 70 applications each year for referrals. These are screened and then directed to individual members who have expressed an interest in receiving such referrals, according to the appropriate practice areas.
Forging new connections between law students and practitioners
Our annual Meet the Profession Dinner provides a chance for law students and law graduates to meet Christian legal practitioners from a wide range of practice areas, and to get a fresh perspective on how God can use the skills and knowledge that they acquire through their law degree to help others. This event is an opportunity for seasoned practitioners to invest in the next generation, share the lessons learnt through experience and be inspired by the enthusiasm of those beginning their legal careers. The dinner has been the starting point for many fruitful conversations and mentoring relationships in the past.
We also host a monthly Young Lawyers Dinner, where young lawyers, law graduates and students can meet up informally to support each other as they journey together through their legal careers and their walk with God.
Student and graduate members are the first to receive news of clerkships, internships and other career opportunities through our networks.
Empowering members to serve Christ with their skills and resources
We believe that as law students and legal practitioners, we are uniquely placed to serve God through pursuing justice and extending compassion to those who have not been treated justly by society. The Society hosts events featuring speakers from a wide range of Christian organisations, which are designed to give members an opportunity to learn about the ways in which they can serve or otherwise support God’s work of justice in Victoria and elsewhere. Previous speakers at Society events have included Mr Tim Costello AO, CEO of World Vision, and Ms Sally Tonkin, CEO of St Kilda Gatehouse, among others. The Society supports the work of organisations including Prison Fellowship Australia, International Justice Mission Australia and CLEAR International Australia.
The Society also helps to connect those who may be considering applying for non-profit/missions roles with members who have previously undertaken similar roles and who are available to share their experiences and advice.
Advocacy on legal and policy issues of significance
As Christians, our faith is not something that we can relegate to our private lives: our position on social and political issues cannot be separated from our faith, only reconciled with it. The Society provides a voice for Christian lawyers on topical legal and policy issues affecting the community, and makes submissions from a multi-denominational Christian perspective in various forums.
As a member you will receive articles and briefings on legal and policy issues affecting the Society’s constituents, aimed at providing members with a variety of perspectives on issues of the day.