UFU Nominated for Financial Times Innovative Lawyers Awards Europe

July 20, 2023

We are honoured to announce that United For Ukraine has been selected as a prestigious Financial Times Innovative Lawyers Awards Europe finalist. These awards celebrate Europe's most innovative legal solutions and lawyers.

Out of over 550 submissions and 120 companies shortlisted, UFU has been recognized for its exceptional work in the "Legal Department: Innovation in Operational Efficiency." 

Since the first meeting of the co-founders of United For Ukraine on 24 February 2022, the team has managed to build and accelerate its core support pillars upon expertise-based volunteering effectively. Coming from an extensive law background, the founders did not shy away from activating their network and designing a process that would enable efficient and qualitative support amidst the biggest refugee crisis in Europe since World War II. 

As of the third day of the Russian full-scale invasion, the UFU team, supported by 200 lawyers from 20 different countries, was channelling more than a hundred requests per day from people fleeing Ukraine through a structured intake of information on the website, translating them when needed and obtaining responses from lawyers. With growing demand and complexity, repeated requests have been reflected as part of the informational service of the UFU Platform. With the support of the leading services automation provider BRYTER, for remaining individual requests, we developed a platform connecting nearly 400 pro bono lawyers and refugee law clinics from 34 countries. 

As of today, the UFU Legal Aid workstream led by Polina Lehmann and Anastasiia Kozak on the UFU side, with the incredible support of our pro bono partners, resolved 7,200 individual legal inquiries with the count of 200 new inquiries per month ongoing.

This achievement would not be possible without the unwavering dedication of our esteemed partners: McDermott Will & Emery; DLA Piper; Hogan Lovells; Linklaters Warsaw; Morgan Lewis; Queritius; ; STOICA & Asociaţii; lindenpartners; HYAZINTH; PCS Paruch Chruściel Schiffter Stępień Kanclerz | Littler, AKKG Gruszka Kidawa, Refugee Law Clinics Deutschland e.V., Ukrainian Bar Association and PIL.net

Special thanks to the BRYTER team, including Michael Grupp, Micha-Manual Bues, Bartu Gündogdü, Anna Seidl-Schulz, Jakub Makowski, Mari Sun, Mike Fecke, who provided us with their software and technical support; UFU’s co-founder Olga Hamama, who envisioned this possibility of providing cross-border support leveraging technology and expertise-based volunteering and activated her network; dedicated team members, volunteers and supporters for building and supporting us along the way, including Hanna Shalbanava, Ani Astabattsyan, Julia Guzik;  Olga Sendetska, Mariia Puchyna, Anastasia Dulska, Leonid Shmatenko, Olga Kuchmiienko; Tetiana Pudel.

We aim to leverage this nomination to encourage more legal partners to join our network and contribute to their efforts and funds in supporting the people of Ukraine.

Read more about the awards and see all finalists here.

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