Human Rights Law Centre

Refugee Clinic

HRLC's Refugee Clinic works in collaboration with Across Borders and Saint Andrews Refugee Services (StARS) to support refugee and asylum applications to the UNHCR's Cairo Office. The Clinic is the first of its kind in the UK.







The Refugee Clinic was established in February 2020, co-founded by former Clinic Director, Laura Wills, and colleagues at Across Borders. The Clinic was created with the aim of supporting StARS with its vital work with refugees and asylum seekers.

StARS is a Cairo-based organisation, established in 1979 to improve the quality of life of refugees and vulnerable migrants in Egypt. Their Refugee Legal Aid Program (RLAP) is currently the only legal aid provider for those seeking refugee status in Egypt. The Clinic operates to support RLAP through casework assistance and research. 

Opportunities for students

Refugee Clinic placement

University of Nottingham law students can undertake placements in the Clinic during which they will work remotely with legal advisors from StARS RLAP on Refugee Status Determination (RSD), Protection Referrals and Resettlement applications to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Cairo. As caseworkers, students assist with drafting these applications and carry out country of origin research. 

2022/23 Student Caseworkers:

  • Francesca Woodman
  • Mohammad Ismail
  • Ritika Goyal
  • Rosie Woodward

Student caseworkers also support the HRLC and the University in celebrating and promoting Refugee Week.


During the the 2022/23 academic session, our students worked on a total of 56 cases, including Appeal Briefs, Appeal Statements, Appeal Closing Statements, Protection Case Referrals and Protection Case Follow-ups submitted to UNHCR. 

The Clinic is not accepting applications for student caseworkers for the 2023/24 academic session.

Working with the HRLC and StARS gave me the opportunity to learn more about international refugee law and have a real-life impact. I'm excited to be part of the important work they do and hopefully help people who are going through the lengthy legal process to seek asylum and refugee status. 
Francesca Woodman, Student Caseworker

Information for asylum seekers and refugees

The Refugee Clinic is unable to work on asylum applications made in the UK. If you are claiming asylum or refugee status in the UK, there are many organisations that can support you, including the British Red Cross. You can find out more information about their services and localities on their website.

If you are a refugee or asylum seeker in Cairo and require support, please contact StARS directly. Information about their services and contact details can be found on their website.

Across Borders

This initiative has been made possible by funding gained by Across Borders. Across Borders was established in 2016 by a group of individuals who used to work at StARS in Cairo, Egypt.

When they returned to the UK, they wanted to set up an organisation that provides financial and legal support to organisations working with refugees and migrants in the Middle East and North Africa region.

If you would like to support Across Borders, you can make a donation.




Human Rights Law Centre

School of Law
University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

+44 (0)115 846 8506