Our justice, our leadership: the grassroots women’s community justice guide

Our justice, our leadership: the grassroots women’s community justice guide

This guide was designed to serve grassroots women, trainers, and facilitators involved in community justice activities across Africa. It was written by grassroots women, trainers, and facilitators who are members of the Huairou Commission and Women’s Land Link Africa (WLLA) – a Pan-African platform on land and property rights. It shows how grassroots women across Africa have achieved justice, especially related to land rights, and how they have equipped volunteers who continue to work for justice in their communities. They share sample activities, case studies, and references to helpful additional resources.

The guide has six broad aims and three specific purposes:

Aims:

-Introduce women with land issues to opportunities for justice
-Share the experience and wisdom of grassroots women
-Help women gain ownership of land and property and work on land and property rights
-Build capacity to mobilise women and communities for justice work
-Support cooperation among organisations focusing on statutory and legal rights and communities focusing on customary and traditional practices
-Support sustainable initiatives

Purposes:

-Describe what a Community Justice Process involves
-Describe what Community Justice Workers are trained to do
-Provide resources to help grassroots women organise their own Community Justice Process and mobilise their own Community Justice Workers

For the purposes of this guide, a distinction is made between two kinds of activities (two paths) that make up the Community Justice Process: community organising and leadership development. The section on community organising activities is structured as a seven step process, which ends with sustaining long-term support for community justice. The following four kinds of community organising activities are highlighted: conducting community-driven processes for resolving land disputes; raising awareness of land rights issues; providing advice and help in working with the legal system; and offering support to people who might not be able to afford legal services.

Seven leadership development resources are also included, encompassing the following kinds of activities: conducting assessments to identify community, group, and individual needs; deciding relevant training objectives and planning training activities; identifying potential trainees and selecting training participants; as well as organising, conducting, and evaluating community events and training activities.

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