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Innovation Lab Participants

Legal Empowerment and Community Lawyering in Latin America

6 projects selected
5.000 USD & technical support for each selected project
8 months to implement the project


The last month of June, the Legal Empowerment Network, with the support of the Tinker Foundation, launched a call to participate in the Legal Empowerment and Community Lawyering Innovation Lab for Latin America.

The Innovation Lab is a small initiative oriented towards supporting innovative projects that use legal empowerment strategies to help people, groups and/or communities to overcome injustice, in any of its diverse forms.

The call received more than 90 applications, from 16 countries in the region, with ideas, projects and urgent and relevant initiatives in the current contexts. This made the selection process very difficult and shows the necessity to strengthen support and solidarity mechanisms with those that are defending rights on the first line.

Know more about the 6 organizations that will participate in the Innovation Lab for the next 8 months.

Associação de Defesa Etnoambiental - Kanindé (Brazil)

The Associação de Defesa Etnoambiental - Kanindé works to promote harmony between human beings and the environment, and acts for a fair and responsible development.

Project: Justice and indigenous peoples

Accompaniment and legal advice to indigenous associations; reporting invasions and human rights violations before relevant organisms; building the communities’ legal knowledge; taking legal actions to ensure the rights of indigenous peoples and their lands.

Photograph: © Gabriel Uchida

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Clínica Jurídica de Interés Público “Grupo de Acciones Públicas” (GAP) de la Universidad del Rosario (Colombia)

The clinic was created 21 years ago with two purposes: on the one hand, to incorporate clinical legal education to law university education, as a space to train students in skills and abilities to exercise the legal profession from a holistic perspective, promoting ethical values and the ideal to work for social justice, as the basis to create agents of change; on the other hand, to foster spaces to defend the human rights of vulnerable communities and the public interest, with strategic litigation as a means to achieve real access to justice.

Project: Youth network for environmental justice in Colombia's regions

Development of new capacities in youths from different regions in the country, as a space to share knowledge regarding environmental justice, mechanisms for the protection of human rights, and strategic litigation, focusing on the defense of the environment and territory. The project aims to contribute to sustainable, peaceful and inclusive building from a regional perspective, sharing experiences about issues and fostering the youths role as agents and leaders for the transformation in their communities.

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Colectiva Amorales (El Salvador)

Colectiva Amorales is an organization comprised by feminist, artist and professional women that fight for the decriminalization of abortion, legal empowerment as a way to prevent gender-based violence, advocacy and the takeover of public spaces.

Project: Let’s talk about laws

Creation of an online platform that allows to bring -in a systematic and fun way- information and legal knowledge to women and teenagers victims of violence, that allowed them to acquire knowledge and collectively reflect through the interaction with the contents and the discussion around these issues with a popular education approach.

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Fundación Markani (Argentina)

Fundación Markani promotes the integration of communities in a situation of social vulnerability, creating awareness about the importance of building an inclusive society and with a gender perspective, promoting their active participation through the full exercise of their rights, achieving to impact public policies.

Project: Intercultural legal literacy and local advocacy for women from the Yunga Salteña as gender-based violence prevention

Development of legal capacities among peasant and originary kolla women living in communities in the Iruya department, particularly in the yungas area, municipality of Isla de Caña, in order to decrease the gap between these women and the access to justice of communities and organizations living more than 300km away from the provincial capital.

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Fundación para el Desarrollo Comunitario - FUNDECOM (Nicaragua)

FUNDECOM is a community-based organization, referent in the promotion, protection and defense of women and teenage girls’ human rights in rural areas and human settlements in Nicaragua, accompanying the strengthening of community leaders, working on legal empowerment, creating capacities to self-manage rights and well-being to live a life without violence, and helping to save the lives of women and girls who have suffered from violence through efforts lead by community legal advocates.

Project: Only the community saves the community in order to guarantee access to justice to women and girls who have suffered from violence

Helping to save lives of women and girls from rural communities who suffered from violence, with community psychological support as fundamental emotional support, for legal empowerment and community lawyering online support that enables access to justice.

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Unión Verapacense de Organizaciones Campesinas - UVOC (Guatemala)

UVOC is a peasant and indigenous organization, with respect to the Mayan Worldview and the balance between all people, that fights for the reivindicacion of peasant and indigenous peoples’ rights. The organization is inspired in the historical resistance of indigenous peoples and their ancestral right to the tenure, use and control of their lands; which strengthens resistance against neocolonialism and the neoliberal capitalist system, and which contributes to the construction of a more humane, fair and balanced world, respecting and including all peoples, cultures and languages.

Project: Towards the creation of a Legal, Community and Ancestral Advocates Network in defense of life, human rights and ancestral lands

Contributing to the technical-legal strengthening of rural and indigenous community leaders from the northern region of Guatemala, through the establishment of the legal advocates network and a continued legal-strategic training.

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