Through the Legal Empowerment of Women Using Technology and Innovation (LEWUTI) project, BarefootLaw employs digital solutions, coupled with traditional methods such as community sensitisation and mediation, to overcome barriers of geography, knowledge and cost to deliver access to justice to women.
Every six weeks, a team of lawyers from BarefootLaw journeys to Gulu district, in northern Uganda, to hold outreaches and facilitate digital engagement, as a component of the LEWUTI project. Between 28th October and 1st November, the team held three sensitisations in the various divisions of Gulu Municipality, which included: Laroo, Bar Dege and Layibi.
Acen Florence, a vendor in Gulu Market attended all 3 hours of one of the sessions and had this to say, “This training was very helpful in opening our minds with knowledge of the law and our rights. Now we know where to report and defend ourselves, when we are pressed…Most importantly, free telephone numbers that have been given will help me with a land issue I am currently facing. When I am stuck or have no airtime on my phone, I will be able to communicate with a lawyer, free of charge, to for guidance.’’
A total of 476 women and 53 men attended all our three (3) sensitisations. This was lower than the average over 870 people from our previous outreaches. The team attributes this to the rainy days and busy schedules of people in town.
Hon. Betty Aol Ochan, The Woman MP of Gulu Municipality, graced one of the days to welcome the women and encourage them to mobilize more of their friends to attend such sensitisations that better the livelihood of society. ‘’ I would have loved to find all these seats filled, but since some of you have attended, you are now the ambassadors of BarefootLaw. When you come face-to-face with an injustice, use today’s knowledge to rightfully fight for what is right by the law,’’ she remarked.
Working with national leaders- Betty Aol Ochan, the Woman MP of Gulu shares with the women in our audience
Under our 2018/21 Strategic Plan, one of our objectives towards reaching two million Ugandans is to “Increase the proportion of people receiving direct legal guidance and support to access to justice.’’ With every new LEWUTI session we continue to shoot closer, to the bullseye.
The women share a light moment with their Woman leader and members of the BarefootLaw team
SUMMARY OF THE LEWUTI OUTREACH IN GULU MUNICIPALITY (28TH OCT- 1ST NOV)
Legal Issues Tackled;
- Human Rights
- Women Rights to Own Property
- The law on Gender-based Violence
- Succession (with a will writing clinic)
Most Recurrent Legal Issue as identified by the women;
- High Legal fees
- Women refused to inherit their father’s property
- Domestic Violence (Physical and Economic)
- Land disputes
- Discrimination of Widows and orphaned children