The Association of East African Law Students (EALSA) is an independent, non-profit and non-political association started by Kenyan law students with aims among others to promote the professional needs of law students within the East Africa Community (EAC). The Association is composed of law students from universities within the EAC region. It operates under the guidance of the East Africa Law Society (EALS).

Since the conceptualization of EALSA, progress has been made both in Kenyaand other EAC countries. Given the idea came from Kenyan law students, it was necessary to lay ground and actualize this concept firmly within Kenya (State Chapter) while it spreads incrementally to other EAC member states. Currently, EALSA has a Chapter in each of the Kenyan Universities offering Law. Students in other Universities in the EAC Partner States are as well in the process of establishing EALSA Chapters.

The Kenyan Chapter was officially launched at a summit presided over by Justice Mr Isaac Lenaola, a judge of the East African Court of Justice (EACJ) and graced by among others Hon Matheka Teresia of the Judiciary Training Institute. The summit was held in consultation with the East Africa Law Society (EALS) and in partnership with Kenyatta University and the State Department for EAC Affairs. Over 90 law students consisting ten student representatives from each of the 11 law faculties in Kenya participated. These adopted the Association’s documents and approved its registration as a Society under the Laws of Kenya (process ongoing). The election of the officials of the Kenyan Chapter was also done in the meeting.

The Association is currently working on a number of flagship activities that are set to involve law students across Kenya and where possible from other EAC States. First in its schedule is the proposed annual conference dubbed “the Bridge Conference” which seeks to initiate a conversation between the legal profession and the law student. There also are ongoing plans to roll out a nation-wide civic education /Legal Aid program to be conducted by EALSA Chapter in the various Universities and held in partnership with the Kenyan Chapter of the International Commission of Jurists among other partners. This is aimed at spurring access to justice.

Being a non-profit association, EALSA banks on the good-will of its partners to fund its activities. In this regard, all support to the Association is submitted to the East Africa Law Society which holds the same in trust for the Association. The EALSA Board is the administrative arm of the Association and is in charge of running its day to day activities. This currently made up of the Kenyan Leadership and operates in acting capacity pending the official establishment of Chapters in other EAC States. The EALS plays an oversight role over the operations of the Board pending the establishment of an advisory board.