It is critical that people are made aware of their rights and responsibilities and empowered, through legal knowledge, to demand justice. The LRF reaches out to communities, particularly those in remote regions, educating the residents and mobilising them to create structures which can discuss the legal issues affecting their community and identify solutions available to them. The key sector of children and youth are not overlooked and active participants are selected for training as peer legal advisors. The LRF has embedded the volunteer model in its programming, training volunteers who then work within their communities, building legal awareness.
The law is complex and people need advice and assistance if they are to use the formal justice system. The LRF, through its permanent offices and help desks at magistrates’ courts, provides legal assistance to the marginalised to enable them to navigate the justice delivery system. The LRF also takes legal services directly to the people through mobile legal aid clinics moving around the rural areas. There is a toll-free help line, operated by LRF lawyers who offer legal advice free of charge to those calling in.
Each year The LRF assists an average of 2,866 self-actors to present cases at courts across the country. These ranged through maintenance claims, bail applications, domestic violence, deceased estates disputes, property rights disputes and peace orders. 2,144 of the cases presented by self-actors were reported as successfully resolved. The following services are offered by LRF:
The LRF gathers evidence from its interventions and uses the information and data to engage with appropriate stakeholders in the justice delivery sector to advocate for law and policy reform. While LRF prioritizes dialogue, it also uses public interest litigation and publicity campaigns to promote a human rights culture and the importance of observing the rule of law.
The LRF utilizes different tactics to contribute to an enabling environment where democratic rights are claimed by an informed public that demands the protection and enforcement of constitutional and human rights.
The LRF works with authorities and institutions to strengthen the justice system, identifying barriers to accessing justice and addressing these through building the capacities of officials responsible for the administration and delivery of justice. Our programmes have also improved the delivery of justice in rural and marginalized areas, both through building the capacity of traditional leaders across the country on professional court processes and also individuals by making them aware of how the customary law courts function and their rights when they appear before the court.