South Africa

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Centre for Community Justice and Development: Using Innovative Financing to Sustain Legal Empowerment Work in South Africa

+Acumen, Open Society Justice Initiative,

This case study follows the story of Winnie Martens, founding director of the Centre for Community Justice (CCJD) in South Africa, as she shaped the organization into a nonprofit social enterprise focused on the intertwined mission of “justice” and “development” for local communities surrounding The University of KwaZulu-Natal. Today, the organization supports a network of…

Justice Policy Series, Part 1: Access to Justice

Open Government Partnership, Joseph Foti, Jessica Hickle, Maha Jweied,

The Open Government Partnership (OGP) provides an opportunity for government and civil society reformers to make government more transparent, participatory, and accountable. Working together, government and civil society co-create two-year action plans with concrete commitments across a broad range of issues that are then monitored by OGP’s Independent Reporting Mechanism (IRM). Until recently, access to…

Legal Empowerment as Social Entrepreneurship: The KwaZulu-Natal Cases of Bulwer and New Hanover

Fayth Ruffin, Winnie Kubayi Martins,

In this chapter, theoretical foundations of social entrepreneurship and legal empowerment are explored and intersection of these social actions by community based-paralegal practice in rural KwaZulu-Natal examined. Conceptually, integration of social entrepreneurship and legal empowerment innovatively contributes to the broader discourse on self-determined community development and democratic governance. Empirical evidence shows that community-based paralegals generate…

The South African Citizenship Act (Act 88 of 1995)

The Parliament of the Republic of South Africa,

The South African Citizenship Act is the sole act which regulates citizenship in South Africa. It must be interpreted in the spirit of the Bill of Rights in the South African Constitution which states: “No citizen may be deprived of citizenship” and that South Africans share an equal citizenship.” – Section 20 Published in 1995,…

Childhood Statelessness in South Africa

Lawyers for Human Rights, The Institute for Statelessness and Inclusion,

This short booklet is a collection of real stories which illustrate the problems children in South Africa face with access to citizenship. It also recommends a solution and records the recommendations made by the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child on the relevant issue.

Promoting Citizenship and Preventing Statelessness in South Africa: A Practitioner’s Guide

Lawyers for Human Rights: Making Rights Real,

This guide is an exemplary capacity-building tool aimed at coaching lawyers, paralegals and social workers to resolve cases of statelessness and provides practical guidance in the representation and provision of assistance to stateless persons.

Technology in Case Management for Legal Empowerment Work

The Engine Room, Open Society Justice Initiative ,

This report reviews how organisations in Indonesia, Moldova, Mongolia, Sierra Leone and South Africa are using technology and data to further their work on legal empowerment.  To do so, it assesses how organisations in Open Society Foundations’ Shared Framework collect, manage and analyse data on community based justice provision in those five countries, as well…

Do More Empowered Citizens Make More Accountable States? Power and Legitimacy in Legal Empowerment Initiatives in Kenya and South Africa

Francesca Feruglio, Institute of Development Studies,

Marginalised groups and individuals often face difficulties in accessing essential services such as housing, health care and water – despite the existence of national and international laws that require states to guarantee equal access to basic services. Civil society organisations and lawyers in several countries are using legal frameworks to hold states accountable for their…

Childhood Statelessness in South Africa

The Institute on Statelessness and Inclusion, Lawyers for Human Rights,

Childhood statelessness in South Africa is a generally unaddressed, largely preventable, but a growing phenomenon. This short publication presents the experiences of 9 children who have been let down by the system, denied their right to acquire a nationality and rendered stateless in South Africa. The many issues that come to rise through their stories…

South Africa’s Treatment Action Campaign: Combining Law and Social Mobilization to Realize the Right to Health

Mark Heywood,

This resource is from the Journal of Human Rights Practice, Volume 1, Number 1, March 2009. Abstract: This article summarizes the experience and results of a campaign for access to medicines for HIV in South Africa, led by the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) between 1998 and 2008. It illustrates how the TAC mobilized people to campaign…

The World’s First Book on Community Paralegals

Posted by Namati in Community Paralegals, General, Namati News, Resources & Research

I am thrilled to share a new book with you: Community Paralegals and the Pursuit of Justice. Community paralegals demystify law and empower people to advocate for themselves. They are at the heart of our movement for justice. But they have been largely ignored by scholars and writers. This book starts to fill that void….

“Paralegals support the justice system as a whole”

Posted by Bremen Donovan in Advocacy & Systemic Change, Community Paralegals, Global Legal Empowerment Network

Nomboniso Nangu Maqubela, the Interim National Coordinator for South Africa’s National Alliance for the Development of Community Advice Offices (NADCAO), discusses grassroots efforts to win formal recognition of community-based paralegals in a forthcoming Legal Practice Bill.