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Ian Stuart

Ian Stuart is crowdfunding

49%
£1,734
raised of £3,500 target by 67 supporters

Weʼre raising £3,500 to help Sarah qualify as a death penalty lawyer.

Dorset, England

What is crowdfunding?

Crowdfunding is a new type of fundraising where you can raise funds for your own personal cause, even if you're not a registered nonprofit.

The page owner is responsible for the distribution of funds raised.

Story

Lockdown

COVID-19 has been unimaginable for so many of us. Unspeakable grief, loss, and separation. Except for key workers, we have all been confined to our homes many of us isolated without access to the outdoors with the command to “stay home, protect the NHS and save lives”.

But consider being under lockdown in an even smaller space, possibly the size of your bathroom, alone, for twenty-three hours a day. And with the only thing to look forward to after an indeterminate period is death.

This is the fate awaiting many on death row in America.

But the prisoner has been through the court system and found guilty.

for every ten people on death row who are executed, at least one person on death row is innocent.

"Killing the Innocent: The Death Penalty and Miscarriages of Justice", by Dr. Bharat Malkani, Law School, the University of Birmingham (now a senior lecturer at Cardiff University).

Consider the case of James Beathard in Texas. Beathard’s sentence hinged on the court testimony of one man who later publicly recanted. But under a bizarre law in Texas, no new evidence is allowed in death penalty cases after 30 days. So, another innocent man went to his death.

To represent those paying for their alleged actions with their lives requires a unique blend of passion and skill. And so I have set up a page for someone with those qualities who will gain her qualifications and fairly represent those on Death Row.

Sarah Lily Brunsdon

No one could accuse Sarah of being born into privilege. Coming from an unhappy home is sadly not unusual these days. But going on to achieve excellent GCSE and ”A” levels whilst “sofa surfing”, living in multiple foster situations and finally being institutionalized as a result of sexual exploitation is remarkable.

Battling homelessness in Liverpool and against all the odds, Sarah gained a place to study English at the University of Liverpool. Despite being a victim of domestic abuse, Sarah went on to read for a Master’s degree in social policy graduating in 2019, and obtaining work at a non-profit organization where she advises on rehousing the homeless. Working as she does with the socially excluded, offenders and the vulnerable became the catalyst for Sarah’s passion for the law. Sarah is convinced that her background of social abuse and institutionalized living provides her with an insight into the world of the underdog.

In 2020 Sarah joined LifeLines, the charity that supports and befriends prisoners on America’s Death Row through writing letters. Sarah now has two friends on the Row with whom she corresponds regularly. Sarah had found the focus for her energy and commitment. With Clive Stafford Smith’s advice, the leading human rights lawyer, Sarah decided to pursue her qualifications in law to help those imprisoned on Death Row.

What can I do to help those on Death Row?

One way is by ensuring that the prisoner gets fair representation in court. Help me sponsor Sarah Lily Brunsdon, whom I have never met but whose integrity and singularity of purpose - wanting to fight for those seeking justice - has impressed me.

Sarah needs to take an LLM degree and sit the bar examination in America. This LLM degree will attract funding through loans or scholarships. But Sarah will find the first step difficult because taking the preliminary SQE essentials preparation course offers no access to funding.

Sarah's path will not be an easy one as the University of Law's preparation course fees alone cost £3500. To pay her rent and live, Sarah will have to continue to work full-time. But if everybody reading this crowdfunding page who is able to can donate just £5 to Sarah’s fund, it will go directly into paying her course fees.

(If you would like to subscribe to an occasional update on Sarah’s progress, please contact me with your email address.)

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Updates

7

  • Ian Stuart10 days ago
    Ian Stuart

    Ian Stuart

    10 days ago

    Sarah has surpassed her initial goal of £1500 but whilst we wait for the syndication of her story we will keep the goal at £3500 - the full cost of the preparation course. A donation will ensure that Sarah is able to take this initial course before going on to study for her LLM law degree - which she can get a scholarship/loan to contribute to the £13,000 cost (this preparatory course costing £3500 attracts no governmental funding). Please help Sarah help others. No donation is too small.

    Share this update to help us raise more

  • Ian Stuart2 months ago
    Ian Stuart

    Ian Stuart

    2 months ago

    Because of the interest in Sarah's story, I am revising the amount asked for on the crowdfunding page. Having spoken with Sarah we have decided to put down the full cost of the SQE essentials preparation course, £3500. Sarah will still have the LLM law degree costs of £13,000 but she can add that to the mountain of debt that she (and most students in this country) will have. What you have contributed to (and others will follow I hope) is the preparation course for that degree that does not allow applications for government-backed funding.

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  • Ian Stuart2 months ago
    Ian Stuart

    Ian Stuart

    2 months ago

    In response to all supporters, especially those in Liverpool, Sarah writes on Saturday 17 April 2021: I am overwhelmed by the support shown by everyone who has donated or shared this fundraiser - thank you for helping me work towards my goal of supporting the unsupported, often misrepresented, vulnerable and socially excluded within society. I am particularly heart-warmed by the support shown by my fellow Liverpudlians - thank you so much. The city of Liverpool has been my home and will always have a place in my heart.

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2 months ago

Ian Stuart started crowdfunding

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Page last updated on: 6/6/2021 08.03

Supporters

67

  • Lindesay

    Lindesay

    Jun 6, 2021

    From a LifeLines member - good luck, Sarah, and thank you for committing to give so much to people who so desperately need it.

    £10.00

  • Belvedere friend

    Belvedere friend

    Jun 4, 2021

    Dear Sarah - as promised I have donated towards your goal. I am aware how difficult childhood can be without the love and belief of people around you. Wishing you every success :)

    £100.00

  • Anonymous

    Anonymous

    May 23, 2021

    Good luck Sarah, never stop xx

    £5.00

  • Anonymous

    Anonymous

    May 18, 2021

    £10.00

  • Former Belvedere pupil

    Former Belvedere pupil

    May 16, 2021

    Your story is inspiring and I'm sure your determination will see you reach your goals. Wishing you every success in the future.

    £10.00

  • Jem (St Helens)

    Jem (St Helens)

    May 15, 2021

    Good luck

    £10.00

  • Kelley Schruyers

    Kelley Schruyers

    May 14, 2021

    All the best wishes for you hunny. I hope you meet your goal! Xxx

    £5.00

Ian Stuart

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About the fundraiser
Ian Stuart

Ian Stuart

Dorset, England

Member of LifeLines (2020)

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