This year, AIJA’s 57th International Young Lawyers’ Congress commits several actions towards the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all, according to the UN. Under the theme ‘Sustainability and the Law: Planet. People. Future’, the congress will take place from 3-7 September at the Parco dei Principi Grand Hotel & Spa, in Rome.
Private practice lawyers, in-house counsel, business leaders, entrepreneurs, as well as representatives from UN bodies and governments, are all in attendance this year, to explore the ways in which today’s digitalised and globalised world can become more sustainable.
Manuela Cavallo, chair of the organising committee, said: ‘All of us can take small steps to contribute to a more sustainable planet. Together with the association, this year’s organising committee has been inspired to do just that: take action to be more sustainable! It’s important for us to show that not only the legal profession can inspire change towards a better future, but we can also take some actions together on the occasion of this year’s congress.’
In collaboration with congress partners, vendors, sponsors and other initiatives, here’s what makes the event AIJA’s possibly first sustainable congress this year:
PLANTING TREES WITH TREEDOM, TO OFFSET CARBON EMISSIONS
This year, the congress has partnered with Italian sustainability start-up Treedom to have one tree planted for every participant. These trees will be planted to contribute to reforestation activities where they’re most needed around the world.
The congress has partnered with Italian high-speed train company Italo to offer 10% discount to participants travelling in Italy during the week of the congress, from 2 September to 8 September. Using public transport where possible – trains and buses, for instance, are more energy-efficient than individual cars.
Car sharing is another sustainable mobility option proposed for this year’s congress. The congress has partnered with car2go, the world’s first free-floating car sharing service. Participants can benefit from free subscription and a €5 credit.
One of the most obvious environmental benefits of car sharing is the fact that it leads to less emissions. The less cars there are on the roads, the fewer the emissions. Think about it the next time you want to drive.
Giving back to the local community
For the opening ceremony (Wednesday 4 September), the congress has partnered with Raggio di Sole Onlus, an association that works with adults with special needs who require further help because of their psycho-physical disorders. The association has a total of 51 patients, 21 guests are residential and 30 are semi-residential. This association offers all guests a home, a protected life, the warmth of a family and many rehabilitation, creative and recreational activities they can take part in everyday. In addition to that, Raggio di Sole offers to each individuals medical needs, providing them with professional staff including doctors, rehabilitators, and assistants OOSS.
More information soon.
Addressing food waste
For the opening ceremony (Wednesday 4 September) and Day out (Friday 6 September), the congress has partnered with non-profit organisation Equoevento to be sure sure all excess food (which meets health guidelines) is donated to those who are less fortunate.
OFFERING REUSABLE BOTTLES
One of this year’s Platinum sponsors, Portolano Cavallo will give away 700+ reusable bottles at the congress, in commitment towards UN’s Responsible Production and Consumption Goal.
Advancing human rights and the UN’s Peace, Justice and Strong institutions Goal
As an international association of young lawyers, AIJA is committed to defend and actively promote core legal principles, such as the rule of law and human rights. During the Congress, AIJA will organise a human rights run to raise donations for its SOS Avocats fund. This fund aims to help lawyers who through their human rights work, face opposition and the risk of deprivation of personal liberty.
Further committing to quality education for the young legal profession
This year’s congress will focus not only on giving back to the planet, but also offering a strong academic content. Sessions will address a number of topics covered in the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals to enhance awareness around the issues of the profession and the business of law in relation to sustainability.